17 Oct 2013 21:50pm
WINDHOEK, 17 OCT (NAMPA) - The Namibia Public Passenger Transport Association (NPPTA) expressed concern and dismay with regard to the recent road accident in which 139 workers at Aussenkehr were injured a week ago.
Speaking at a media conference on Thursday, NPPTA Secretary-General Nathan Africa said the union does not condone the transportation of people on open trucks, and urged Government to implement the Public Passenger Transport Bill with immediate effect.
If it was a bus, operators would still be suffering the consequences, because Government would have immediately cracked down on the industry. The NPPTA demands that the owner of the vehicle should be held liable, and the Ministry of Safety and Security must clamp down on the illegal transportation of passengers, especially workers on open trucks, he stressed.
The accident happened around 06h00 when a truck belonging to Namibia Export Grape Company overturned. Four head injuries and two suspected spinal cord injuries were recorded.
Amongst others, two NamPol choppers, two airplanes from E-med, two doctors (a Namibian doctor who received training on trauma in Sweden, and a spinal cord specialist from Sweden), six advanced life support paramedics, one basic life support paramedic and two emergency care technicians were dispatched to the scene.
An ambulance was also dispatched from Keetmanshoop to the Karasburg State Hospital to pick up at least six people to be transported to Windhoek.
Some of the injured suffered traumatic amputations.
According to the Motor-Vehicle Accident Fund (MVA), the costs incurred in the transportation of the patients stood at N.dollars 403 100 in respect of air ambulances and the hiring of paramedics that day, and it was expected to increase.
Aussenkehr is situated in the //Karas Region, some 24 kilometres from Noordoewer.