The truck is believed to have crashed into the vehicles when its brakes failed. (SABC)
The death toll in the accident which a truck crashed into four minibus taxis and a car in Pinetown, north of Durban, has risen to 27.
About 80 people were injured and taken to the RK Khan and Albert Luthuli hospitals in the accident which happened on Thursday night. Rescuers used the Jaws-of-Life to free some of the passengers from the wreckage.
The truck is believed to have crashed into the vehicles when its brakes failed.
KwaZulu-Natal Transport MEC Willies Mchunu, who has visited the scene of the accident, has described it as the worst he's ever seen.
“Now, today, I have really witnessed one of the most, most horrific accidents in the history of this province. With all this said and done, we are working very hard on the identities of all the people who have perished in this accident.”
The driver of the truck has been arrested.
Mchunu has instructed the provincial Traffic Department to investigate the cause of the accident.
“I have ordered the Road Traffic Inspectorate to go deeply into checking the break system and every other fault of this truck, because it could not have happened on its own. And I suspect the brakes have gone wrong.”
Still in Durban, earlier on Thursday, a man was killed and two others seriously injured after two cars collided head-on at Isipingo, south of Durban.
Netcare 911 spokesperson Chris Botha says paramedics tried to save the man's life at the accident on Old Main Road, but died on the scene.
“Tragically he died on the scene due to the extent of injuries he sustained. Two other people sustained serious injuries and were transported to Prince Mshiyeni hospital where they are receiving further care,” according to Botha.