POLICE WARN OF DANGERS OF HIKING ON THE FREEWAY
Written by: Ndumiso Nxumalo
Hikers along the N3 Freeway have been threatened by Metro Police and the long distance taxi drivers to stop hiking on the freeway and avoiding to pay the full transportation fare.
Metro Police said that the usage of the N3 as a hiking spot is unethical because it is against the rules of the road and people need to start using the taxi ranks.
Sandile Magudulela, a Metro police officer, said that they have been trying by all means to stop people from hiking on the N3 freeway.
“People don’t listen. It is wrong to hike from that spot. Anyone can stop for them and who knows if they will arrive where they are going; they might be killed, raped or even kidnapped,” cautioned Magudulela.
A Durban University of Technology student, Nkanyiso Jali, said that he sometimes hikes because he cannot afford the taxi fare.
“As I stay in Newcastle, the taxi fee is so expensive and most of the time as a student it is hard to afford R170. So I hike because I will pay half the price,” explained Jali.
Jali admitted to knowing the dangers of hiking.
“I know the danger of hiking. It is wrong but my financial difficulties give me no choice and sometimes I do take taxis but when I’m broke hiking is the way for me,” added Jali.
Mbuyiseni Madodndo, one of the taxi drivers who drives long distance taxis, said that it is the duty of the Metro police to reduce the rate of hikers.
“As taxi drivers, we can’t do much because people don’t listen when you warn them of the consequences of hiking. We all know that hiking is dangerous. A serial killer can stop for you who knows. So people must use a safer way of transport,” pleaded Madondo.
Despite the dangers invloved in hiking, some hikers said that it is a risk they are willing to take.
*Caption: A sign displaying a hiker’s destination