DURBAN - An estimated 22 people have been killed in a horrific accident on the M13, in Durban.
The carnage was believed to have been caused when a truck crashed into four minibus taxis and a car in Fields Hill, Pinetown. The driver of the truck has since been arrested and charged with culpable homicide.
Netcare911 spokesperson Chris Botha told eNCA.com on Friday that the initial figure of 27 dead had decreased to 22. He said 19 people died on scene and three died in hospital.
On Thursday, while at the scene, Botha said: "[It's] a total disaster here. [A] heavy-goods truck came down through Fields Hill and collided with two cars on the M13 and then four taxis and another car.
"Seven critical, eight serious injuries and miraculously, 11 escaped with relatively minor injuries," He was speaking while at the scene of the accident.
"All people have been stabilised on scene and taken to hospitals around Durban," he said.
The increase in death toll, resulted from three more people, succumbing to their injuries in hospital.
Rescuers used the Jaws-of-Life to free some of the passengers and bodies from the wreckage.
Bystanders helped paramedics by holding drip bags for some of the injured.
It was believed the truck crashed into the vehicles when its brakes failed.
*The death toll has been updated to 27 based on the latest reports. This figure may change.
- Additional reporting Sapa