Expert quizzed on road surface in Duduzane case


Johannesburg - President Jacob Zuma's son says he was deeply affected by the fatal car crash with a minibus taxi. The February accident left a young mother dead.

JOHANNESBURG - An accident reconstruction expert was on Wednesday questioned about the state of the road when Duduzane Zuma&39;s car rear-ended a minibus taxi, causing the death of a woman.

"Before drafting your expert evidence in this inquest, did you go to the authorities to obtain the map showing the area of the crash and the gradient of the road?" prosecutor Yusuf Baba asked the expert Johannes Petrus Strydom at an inquest in the Randburg Magistrate&39;s Court.

Strydom, who told the court he had 36 years of experience in accident analysis and reconstruction, said he did not deem it necessary to do so.

Baba asked him if he had any knowledge of road drainage elements.

"I am not a road designer, but I know that that depends on the width of a road. As years go by, our roads became more wider," Strydom said.

He went on to explain that when a road surface was even, the designers would elevate it to ensure that water, especially during heavy rainfall, flowed away from the road surface.

"In that photo in front of you, is there a super elevation on that road where the accident happened? You have been to the spot and seen the road," Yusuf asked Strydom.

After a lengthy explanation on point of impact during accidents, Strydom conceded that the road at that point was elevated.

According to Zuma&39;s statement, he lost control of his Porsche after it hit a puddle. It spun and hit the back of the taxi, coming to a standstill facing oncoming traffic.

Zuma&39;s Porsche rear-ended Jabulani Vusi Dlamini&39;s minibus taxi in the rain on the M1 south off-ramp to Grayston Drive, Sandton, in February. Minibus passenger Phumzile Dube was killed and three others were injured.

In July, the National Prosecuting Authority said it declined to prosecute Zuma due to insufficient evidence. The matter would be referred to a magistrate for a formal inquest to determine whether the accident was caused by human error.