Residents fed up with Princess Street speeding

Hout Bay residents have labelled Princess Street a “race track”, saying speeding and reckless driving on the road are common.

Hout Bay residents have urged the authorities to act against ongoing speeding and reckless driving on Princess Street, which they have labelled a “race track”.

Speeding and the flouting of road rules are common on the road, says resident Jessica Alexander.

“You leave the pavement and you will see somebody come flying past, leaving you rattled because of the speed they are travelling. We have children and a child will not be able to withstand such force,” she said.

She called on the City to investigate, saying lives depended on it.

“Every week, there a near misses on this road; if it’s not people that are nearly being run over, it’s other cars that are in danger.”

Another resident, Muneeb Cross, said drastic measures were needed before someone was killed on the ”infamous“ stretch of road.

Mr Cross said he had seen several “near misses” including one in which a small girl was nearly knocked down by a youngster doing burnouts in a black BMW on a Sunday afternoon. The girl and her family had been walking on the opposite pavement at the time.

“It was all good and well until this boy lost control. The car swerved in the family’s direction, but the girl broke away and ran for safety, not knowing the car was swerving her way.”

The girl wasn’t harmed, but the driver had carried on, seemingly unaware of the danger he had caused, Mr Cross said.

“There are a few blindspots on the road, and then you have these youngsters driving their parents’ fancy cars. A lot of them only want to show off their cars and will drive over everybody to do it,” he said.

Cherise Thompson, who lives close to Princess Street, said the road came alive at night, with the sounds of engines roaring and the smell of burnt tyres in the air.

“When you speak to people, they claim there were never any real big accidents on the road, only near misses, which does not make it okay. Some people say we must stop complaining, well, I choose to think that if this continues, I will stop complaining, as I would probably be six feet under,” Ms Thompson said.

She added: “People’s lives are at stake here and it’s about time the City takes that seriously.”

Ms Alexander, Mr Cross and Ms Thompson all called for speed humps and cameras in Princess Street to curb speeding and reckless driving, and Ms Thompson said traffic officers needed to have a greater presence in the area.

Hout Bay Community Police Forum chairman Anthony Chemaly said Princess Street flared up from time to time, but it was “not a consistent issue from a CPF perspective”, and he was unaware of any requests for speed humps in Princess Street.

“The only requests I am aware of have been for Llandudno and outside the international school,” Mr Chemaly said.

He said he planned to meet with Roberto Quintas, the area’s ward councillor and mayoral committee member for urban mobility, to discuss the possibility of speed humps and cameras for Princess Street.

Mr Quintas said he had not received any requests from residents for speed humps.

Sentinel News sent questions to the City of Cape Town for comment, but we did not get a response by deadline.