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Keller commemorates colleagues lost in road accident through safety campaign

Keller’s South Africa-based business Frank Africa has joined forces with road safety campaign Arrive Alive as a memorial for its 18 staff who were killed in a traffic accident last year while en route to work a year ago.

Two buses of Franki staff were hit by a lorry as they travelled to the Nkomati mine project near Johannesburg killing 19 and injuring 15 others.

“Words can’t express the loss and devastation that was felt,” says Franki Managing Director Errol Braithwaite. “Our community was stunned by this tragedy, but it has also drawn us closer together and reminded us all that we must take care of each other’s safety and wellbeing.”

Keller has said that this focus on wellbeing and safety has led the business unit to link up with Arrive Alive.

“The aim of this partnership is not only to promote road safety within the company, but also to benefit the wider community by lobbying government to set a legal limit on the number of hours commercial drivers are allowed to drive within a 24-hour period,” says Braithwaite.

The issue of road safety is high on the agenda in South Africa. According to an Arrive Alive report, just over 14,000 people were killed in crashes in South Africa in 2017. Although last year’s incident was not the fault of Franki drivers, it’s hoped that the material will remind employees that it’s not only important to be safe on the job site, but also travelling to and from work.”

Arrive Alive aims to disseminate road safety information with the aim to improve awareness of road safety issues and save lives.

Family support

In addition to the partnership, the business unit has also launched the Franki Africa Memorial Fund to support the families of those killed in the Nkomati accident.

“We have identified 35 children of the deceased victims and each one will soon receive a substantial bursary to support their education,” Braithwaite explains. “The bursary will be available for five years or until they’re 18. In due course the fund will also be opened up to other applicants who meet the selection criteria.

“We believe this initiative is a worthy way to remember the victims of the Nkomati tragedy. The bursaries will have a very positive impact on these young people’s lives and on their families. Support of this nature could mean the difference between them finishing school or not.”

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