Scores of Mitchell’s Pain residents gathered at Imperial Primary School in Eastridge last Saturday to lodge their claims with the Road Accident Fund (RAF), while others had the opportunity to check on the progress of their claims.
The event was organised by fund as part of their programme to bring services closer to the people – and residents were grateful for the initiative.
“It is a great initiative and it makes our life easier. Sometimes it costs us to go to town to lodge complains (and) we don’t have money for transport.
“We are struggling even to have money to buy food,” said Eastridge resident Esther Phillips.
She said she had come to check the progress on her daughter’s case. “My daughter was knocked down by a car in Tafelsig last year and died on the scene.
“I submitted all the documents but I still didn’t receive anything yet. I just checked it now and they said everything is fine I must wait,” she said.
The 47-year-old mother of four suggested the RAF make more regular visits.
“People are dying on the road every day here. If they (RAF) can come twice a year, that can make a difference,” she said.
RAF regional marketing manager Ntombi Kulati said they were there to assist people with their claims and advised people to claim directly from them because lawyers sometimes delayed cases.
“With funeral claims, within a week we are able to process everything as long you provided relevant documents. Only (when) heavy injuries (are suffered), that takes two years and when someone has a representative, it takes three to five years,” said Ms Kulati.
She emphasised that they have service consultancy to all public hospitals.
Phumeza Nelani, 43, from Tafelsig, thought it was a great initiative by the RAF.
“They are so quick and friendly. I came to lodge a direct claim for my husband’s funeral. He got into car accident in Mpumalanga and burned inside the car beyond recognition in 2014,” she said.
Portland resident Bevan May, 43, said he had come to seek advice on how he could lodge his claim. “We (three family members) had a car accident at the corner of Spine and AZ Berman roads. It was a head on collision. My shoulder was dislocated. I was also operated on but I assume the doctor didn’t do it properly because when it’s cold (I have a lot of pain),” said Mr May.
Two road accident victims were also given wheelchairs at the event.