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'Blue light' crash kills top journo

2012-04-17 08:57

TAKING A DEADLY TOLL: SA's blue-light brigade claims another victim, this time seasoned journalist Tim Ncube.

Jonathan Erasmus, Zululand Fever

Mtubatuba - A well known and respected journalist and a VIP protection officer were killed in a head-on collision in kwaZulu-Natal on April 16, 2012.

Tim Ncube, a seasoned journalist in radio, TV and print, was killed when the driver of a blue light vehicle, part of a cavalcade escorting King Goodwill Zwelithini from his Nongoma palace to a Richards Bay hospital, collieded head-on with Ncube on the N2.

The driver was reported to have been attempting to overtake another vehicle.

THIRD VEHICLE INVOLVED

The accident took place in a 60-80km/h zone near the township of Kwamsane. It is unclear whether either vehicle was speeding, however the extent of the wreckage to both vehicles was extensive.

According to SAPS Kwamsane spokesperson Jabulani Mdletshe, the VIP vehicle was a fair distance from King Zwelithini's vehicle at the time of the incident: "The king and his lead and back vehicles were ahead of the third VIP protection vehicle involved in the collision. The king was being taken to hospital."

Mdletshe said the driver of the VIP vehicle was reportedly catching up to the official cavalcade and tried to overtake at which point he lost control and collided head-on with the oncoming traffic.

Unconfirmed reports indicate the vehicle which the deceased VIP officer tried to overtake may have reacted negatively leading to the officer losing control of the vehicle.

Ncube and the VIP officer were declared dead on the scene. A third vehicle was also involved in the incident with three people injured.

According to officials on the scene either part or all of Zwelithini's remaining cavalcade returned to the scene. It is unknown why the Zulu king was going to hospital.

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