Not too long ago we featured an article about a brand new Volkswagen Polo being driven through a showroom window in Durban. Well, the Road Traffic Management Corporation (RTMC) has officially stated that Polo drivers rank unsafest in SA.
A document provided by the RTMC titled South African Fatal Crashes in Context, paints a grim picture of the road safety within our country with fatal crash data as well as speed infringement data. The study which was concluded over a four year period, from October 1 2017 to June 30 2021 details that: “A total of 48 330 vehicles were involved in 37 583 fatal crashes with 45 232 deaths during the period according to data on the Road Traffic Management Corporation’s national crash data management system,”
The locally produced compact hatchback from the German manufacturer is at any given time doing more harm than good. With drivers performing backyard stunts or attempting to use their entire speedometer to clock 240km/h and beyond (attempting being the operative word here).
The RTMC found that of the top 20 models involved in fatal crashes, the Toyota Hilux and Quantum as well as the Volkswagen Polo made up a majority at a sheer 43.2%. However it was the Polo that contributed the most with a statistic of 16.7% alone reaffirming that Polo drivers rank unsafest in SA.
Fatalities aside, the three offenders listed above also account for the highest number of speed infringement fines dished out by the now unlawful AARTO system. All three of the vehicles are locally produced and highly popular for their specified purposes but those that get behind the wheel of a polo achieved 35% of the total speeding infringements from the reviewed period. Want to see the safety ratings of a polo? Click here.
It is also unfair to compare these vehicles to every other model since the popular Polo accounts for more than 1 500 new units sold per month, far more than any of its rivals. Simple arithmetic concludes that the more of them driving around, the more likely to be in an accident but one can’t help but hypothesise that affordable cars should perhaps come with an advanced driving course. That being said; Polo drivers rank unsafest in SA but Kwid drivers, we are looking at you too.