Policemen crashed near Graaff-Reinet


Two police officers died in a car accident near Graaff-Reinet on Friday while they were transporting prisoners.

A third police officer was seriously injured.

Col. Priscilla Naidu, Eastern Cape police spokesperson, says the accident took place at around 09:30 on the R63 between Pearston and Graaff-Reinet. The names of the officers have not been released.

The police officers were transporting two prisoners awaiting trial from the Magistrate’s Court on Somerset East to correctional services on Graaff-Reinet when a tire of the police vehicle they were traveling in burst.

The vehicle left the road and rolled several times.

A 59-year-old warrant officer and a 41-year-old constable were pronounced dead at the scene.

A 42-year-old sergeant sustained serious injuries and was taken to hospital for treatment after the accident together with the two prisoners. It is not clear if the inmates sustained any injuries in the accident.

A case of culpable homicide is being investigated.

Lt. Gen. Nomthetheleli Mene, police commissioner in the Eastern Cape, meanwhile expressed her condolences to the police officers’ next of kin and wished the injured police officer a speedy recovery.

“Our deepest condolences to the families as they mourn the tragic loss of their loved ones. The untimely death of the police officers has shaken the South African Police Service (SAPS) family and reminds us of the dangers police officers face every day.

“We honor them for their services rendered in the performance of their duties and their sacrifices to keep our communities safe,” says Mene.