SEVEN people were killed while eight others were injured along the Harare-Bindura Road on Tuesday when a vehicle they were travelling in overturned after the driver attempted to avoid a dog. Six passengers died on the spot in the accident that occurred at the 50km peg, while the other person died on admission to Concession Hospital.
The Toyota Granvia was carrying 14 passengers when it overturned twice and hit a tree after the driver tried to avoid a dog that was crossing the road.
Police, in conjunction with the Traffic Safety Council of Zimbabwe, have since intensified awareness campaigns ahead of the Heroes and Defence Forces Holidays next week. The holidays will be commemorated on Monday and Tuesday. National traffic police spokesperson Inspector Tigere Chigome confirmed the accident.
He said bodies of the deceased were taken to Concession Hospital mortuary, while those injured were admitted at the same hospital.
The driver is suspected to have been speeding.
"The driver tried to avoid the dog by swerving to the right at the same time applying emergency brakes," said Insp Chigome.
"The vehicle veered off the road to the right and overturned twice before hitting a tree. It finally landed on its roof. The injured are still receiving treatment."
Insp Chigome urged drivers to exercise caution ahead of the public holidays.
"We are approaching the holidays and we know people want to use various modes of transport," he said.
"People should use insured vehicles for their compensation, especially public transport. We are also aware that a lot of robberies take place during holidays and people should not board private vehicles because they end up losing their valuables and even lives.
"In the event that people have boarded private vehicles, they should take number plates of the vehicles they board."
Insp Chigome said motorists should not overload and speed.
"Motorists should not exceed the maximum carrying capacity of their vehicles," he said.
"Drivers should also stick to the speed limits in the areas they are travelling and ensure that tyres are in good condition. If cars are ex-Japanese cars, the tyres need to be changed to suit climatic conditions of this country."