Etosha Roads cause havoc





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  1. #1
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    Angry Etosha Roads cause havoc

    During my recent tour to Namibia (Tubatsane Tours) we came onto some of the worst roads in Namibia from Okaukueju to Olifantsrus.
    One of my clients Land Cruiser Amason front left wheel bearing collapsed. We managed to get some help from Otjiwarongo.
    I know people need to make a living and we much appreciate their willingness to help but... To say everything comes at a price is true.
    It cost my client approximately R9200.00 for the travelling (600km [email protected] Otjiwarongo and back), (Labour 1.30 [email protected]) and the Outer bearing. Luckily the inner bearing was still fine as the mechanic came with the wrong inner bearing and wanted to charge my client for it.
    The park also charged them for the night at R350pppn staying at the picnic site as the camp was fully booked.

    If you guys think its a fair price please convince me as am still want to find the people that is willing to help at a reasonable price.

    From my understanding the roads are being graded now, why wait till there is an outcry from all over.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Etosha Roads cause havoc

    Quote Originally Posted by Innie bos View Post
    During my recent tour to Namibia (Tubatsane Tours) we came onto some of the worst roads in Namibia from Okaukueju to Olifantsrus.
    One of my clients Land Cruiser Amason front left wheel bearing collapsed. We managed to get some help from Otjiwarongo.
    I know people need to make a living and we much appreciate their willingness to help but... To say everything comes at a price is true.
    It cost my client approximately R9200.00 for the travelling (600km [email protected] Otjiwarongo and back), (Labour 1.30 [email protected]) and the Outer bearing. Luckily the inner bearing was still fine as the mechanic came with the wrong inner bearing and wanted to charge my client for it.
    The park also charged them for the night at R350pppn staying at the picnic site as the camp was fully booked.

    If you guys think its a fair price please convince me as am still want to find the people that is willing to help at a reasonable price.

    From my understanding the roads are being graded now, why wait till there is an outcry from all over.
    N$10/km is high. N$2000/1.3h is even more!

    Some private initiative now on to blade the roads for free. The Ministry started to looking at setting tenders now. Some 3 years nothing was done. Namibia's cash flow in in a bad state. Worst management since Geingob became president.
    Last edited by JLK; 2019/08/05 at 06:58 PM.
    Johan Kriel

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  4. #3
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    Default Re: Etosha Roads cause havoc

    Johan, thanks for the update. I see there is something in the newspapers and on Facebook about the grading.
    I was at Olifantsrus in May - some of the worst corrugations I've ever been on. Hope this will now be history - if they can continue with the road maintenance....

  5. #4
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    Default Re: Etosha Roads cause havoc

    It is just so typical. Squander money on tenderpreneurs and other corruptitions and wait for some idiot to kickstart a private initiative with donations from the public. The road between okaukuejo and Namutoni was redone completely. The road between okaukuejo and olifantsrus was never built as a proper high trafic gravelroad since that part of etosha was never accesseble for the public. If the roads are not rehabilitated properly, scraping them will only last a few weeks and it is back to sinkplaat time. And just for interest sake - the biggest users of those roads are tourist busses, overlanders and car rental companies. The heavy loads of trucks, trailers bopping up and down and rental cars with super hard tire pressures just kills the gravel road. Just had to vent!!!
    Quote Originally Posted by WillMartin View Post
    Johan, thanks for the update. I see there is something in the newspapers and on Facebook about the grading.
    I was at Olifantsrus in May - some of the worst corrugations I've ever been on. Hope this will now be history - if they can continue with the road maintenance....
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  7. #5
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    Default Re: Etosha Roads cause havoc

    Your repairs alone were more than any holiday I've every been on, sorry to hear.

    The roads are being graded thanks to the efforts of a private individual and donations.

    In a fair world GRN owes you the cost of repairs plus the price of another holiday.
    2016 Suzuki Gypsy MG413 - The PopeMobile

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    Default Re: Etosha Roads cause havoc

    Quote Originally Posted by Innie bos View Post
    During my recent tour to Namibia (Tubatsane Tours) we came onto some of the worst roads in Namibia from Okaukueju to Olifantsrus.
    One of my clients Land Cruiser Amason front left wheel bearing collapsed. We managed to get some help from Otjiwarongo.
    I know people need to make a living and we much appreciate their willingness to help but... To say everything comes at a price is true.
    It cost my client approximately R9200.00 for the travelling (600km [email protected] Otjiwarongo and back), (Labour 1.30 [email protected]) and the Outer bearing. Luckily the inner bearing was still fine as the mechanic came with the wrong inner bearing and wanted to charge my client for it.
    The park also charged them for the night at R350pppn staying at the picnic site as the camp was fully booked.

    If you guys think its a fair price please convince me as am still want to find the people that is willing to help at a reasonable price.

    From my understanding the roads are being graded now, why wait till there is an outcry from all over.
    So! Who was the company or person doing the repairs so that we can avoid them in future?
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  10. #7
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    Default Re: Etosha Roads cause havoc

    600 km of travelling. That takes up easily 8 hours = to a whole work day for me. My own vehicle has to endure the bad roads as well, it may well need a new widget as well after all that pounding, besides for the normal wear and tear, fuel and maintenance. I have to cart tools there and back and work under non ideal conditions. Sand, dust, heat, not enough light. So, if I am a mechanic, and I have to drive to you to fix your car where it broke down, I would at least want roughly my whole days worth of overheads and a living wage covered. My rent and staff still het paid even if I work in the bush. A welder will nowadays charge you a 1000 bucks an hour, but I'm more reasonable. Then, I start working, remember, my 8 hour day of driving has already eaten up a normal work day, so whatever time I spend on your car is overtime. For that you should be willing to pay me a bit extra. I'm going to get home late, in the dark, to a cold wife and a cold left over dinner. My kids will already be asleep and I missed their school concert. That part that I kept in stock, at my cost, for a year or more, just so that it would be available when your one broke, well, that you should be willing to pay about 50 - 100% extra on top of what it cost me. Otherwise it is not worth my while keeping it in stock.......and if I had to order it for you from Windhoek, or Joburg, it would have taken a day or 3. And couriers are expensive. If from Japan, you would have been stuck for weeks, months maybe. Or you would have had to get the car repatriated on a flatbed.......nou you are looking at big money! Just call me Devils Advocate, but getting help is sometimes priceless in my mind! Especially if it saves the day, or the holiday! (My grouchy 2c.)


  11. #8
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    Default Re: Etosha Roads cause havoc

    Unfortunately DJR hit's it spot on. It is what it is. The guys charge you their hourly rate plus km and time travelled. And if this happened over a weekend it will be double time, as with any standard business.

    Getting a mechanic from outjo would also have been cheaper, although not by much.

    Also I doubt the Etosha road alone ended the life of the bearing, as it is not a part that just dies one minute to the next, even with the etosha road conditions being what they are.

    I have done my fair share of break downs and recoveries (still do on occasion). Often travelling/working at night etc. It's no fun I can tell you that.
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  13. #9
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    Default Re: Etosha Roads cause havoc

    Outjo would’ve been closer. The chaps at Weimann’s Garage on the main road are really great.

    Weimann’s stock heaps of genuine parts - enough to rebuild your Toyota. I was charged R400ph labour for quality suspension work completed, short notice, while I waited. I could not complain.

    However... while I was waiting for my vehicle, in walked a European tourist who had got a flat battery in Etosha. He was charged R6000 for the callout to drive up to Etosha to install a battery in the middle of the bush + the cost of new battery.

    I couldn’t help but think how much cheaper some jumper leads would’ve been! Or maybe learn some basic mechanical skills before you drive into the middle of Africa?

    I don’t think R6k is too much considering you want to be rescued in the middle of nowhere?
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    Default Re: Etosha Roads cause havoc

    Quote Originally Posted by DJR View Post
    600 km of travelling. That takes up easily 8 hours = to a whole work day for me. My own vehicle has to endure the bad roads as well, it may well need a new widget as well after all that pounding, besides for the normal wear and tear, fuel and maintenance. I have to cart tools there and back and work under non ideal conditions. Sand, dust, heat, not enough light. So, if I am a mechanic, and I have to drive to you to fix your car where it broke down, I would at least want roughly my whole days worth of overheads and a living wage covered. My rent and staff still het paid even if I work in the bush. A welder will nowadays charge you a 1000 bucks an hour, but I'm more reasonable. Then, I start working, remember, my 8 hour day of driving has already eaten up a normal work day, so whatever time I spend on your car is overtime. For that you should be willing to pay me a bit extra. I'm going to get home late, in the dark, to a cold wife and a cold left over dinner. My kids will already be asleep and I missed their school concert. That part that I kept in stock, at my cost, for a year or more, just so that it would be available when your one broke, well, that you should be willing to pay about 50 - 100% extra on top of what it cost me. Otherwise it is not worth my while keeping it in stock.......and if I had to order it for you from Windhoek, or Joburg, it would have taken a day or 3. And couriers are expensive. If from Japan, you would have been stuck for weeks, months maybe. Or you would have had to get the car repatriated on a flatbed.......nou you are looking at big money! Just call me Devils Advocate, but getting help is sometimes priceless in my mind! Especially if it saves the day, or the holiday! (My grouchy 2c.)
    If my memory serves me well, I remember hearing about a comment made by President Roosevelt that " it is not what it costs that is important, it is what it is worth to you"
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  17. #11
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    Default Re: Etosha Roads cause havoc

    We also visited Etosha in December 2016. First stop was OlifantsRus via Kamanjab side and moved on to Okakeujo from there and rember that as probably one of the worst gravel pieces I have driven in Nam..

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    Default Re: Etosha Roads cause havoc

    We visit Etosha 2- 3 times per year from way back and has seen the changes to the park. Long before the Western side of Etosha was opened to the tourists, we have see and lived its magic. This magic is fast disappearing though. I read above the screaming about their car that broke down on the gravel roads and the huge recovery costs and that for example the road from Olifantsrus to Okaukuejo has the worst corrugations they have ever seen. Just a question: Who do you think cause these corrugations on this road? It is the tourists with a lot of tyres being inflated to 2.8 bar plus as per the owners instructions. The fashion of the day is also for every 2 tourists they come with one bakkie and you see them in strings of 4-8 cars all creating corrugations. The road we are talking about can be regularly graded, but at enormous cost for the number of vehicles using that road. More sensible would be to more regularly grade the roads closer to the old regular camps, but a new dread has emerged in Etosha: The tourist bakkies with the bird racks on the back taking tourists from the farms surrounding Etosha on day trips into the game park. The drivers quickly learn where the leopard, lions, elephants keep and they bring their parcel of tourists into the park at high speeds and the roads take a knocking. I DO NOT say that the NWR is not at fault for not upkeeping the condition of these roads, but these circumstances make it very difficult.

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    Default Re: Etosha Roads cause havoc

    Quote Originally Posted by DJR View Post
    600 km of travelling. That takes up easily 8 hours = to a whole work day for me. My own vehicle has to endure the bad roads as well, it may well need a new widget as well after all that pounding, besides for the normal wear and tear, fuel and maintenance. I have to cart tools there and back and work under non ideal conditions. Sand, dust, heat, not enough light. So, if I am a mechanic, and I have to drive to you to fix your car where it broke down, I would at least want roughly my whole days worth of overheads and a living wage covered. My rent and staff still het paid even if I work in the bush. A welder will nowadays charge you a 1000 bucks an hour, but I'm more reasonable. Then, I start working, remember, my 8 hour day of driving has already eaten up a normal work day, so whatever time I spend on your car is overtime. For that you should be willing to pay me a bit extra. I'm going to get home late, in the dark, to a cold wife and a cold left over dinner. My kids will already be asleep and I missed their school concert. That part that I kept in stock, at my cost, for a year or more, just so that it would be available when your one broke, well, that you should be willing to pay about 50 - 100% extra on top of what it cost me. Otherwise it is not worth my while keeping it in stock.......and if I had to order it for you from Windhoek, or Joburg, it would have taken a day or 3. And couriers are expensive. If from Japan, you would have been stuck for weeks, months maybe. Or you would have had to get the car repatriated on a flatbed.......nou you are looking at big money! Just call me Devils Advocate, but getting help is sometimes priceless in my mind! Especially if it saves the day, or the holiday! (My grouchy 2c.)
    I agree costs are high but I think you will get a surprise when you find out what the "mechanic" was paid.

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    Default Re: Etosha Roads cause havoc

    Another thing, an easy replacement in far-off places are tyres.....because all you have to do is phone the company in Swakopmund and give them the tyre size and quantity required and they will load the tyres plus tyre machine on a bakkie and go to the vehicle in trouble and fit the new tyres on the spot. Sounds nice? Except that they require a cash deposit via EFT and payment on the spot where the car is located in cash. Last I heard they charge R12,50/km to and the same back to their place. That wil be R25,00 per kilo overall. If you complain they tell you to fix your own tyre.

  22. #15
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    Default Re: Etosha Roads cause havoc

    NWR is not responsible for the maintenance, the Ministry responsible to do it. Not that it would make a difference, but at least NWR collects the money and would maybe in a better situation to get somebody to do maintenance, and then the tourist would get a better deal for what they pay what ever they pump their tyres.
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    Default Re: Etosha Roads cause havoc

    Was die persoon se voertuig dan nie verseker nie?..Ek hoor dan die "off road" versekering firmas doen sulke goeie werk..As jy in die gamadoelas in beweeg moet jy versekering he of betaal en nie kla nie..
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    Thumbs up Re: Etosha Roads cause havoc

    Quote Originally Posted by WillMartin View Post
    Johan, thanks for the update. I see there is something in the newspapers and on Facebook about the grading.
    I was at Olifantsrus in May - some of the worst corrugations I've ever been on. Hope this will now be history - if they can continue with the road maintenance....
    Yeah the roads were pretty rough in May this year. Graders were out and about up north near Angola border and around Ais Ais. Worst was definitely around solitaire on the C19 and C14.
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    Default Re: Etosha Roads cause havoc

    A welder will nowadays charge you a 1000 bucks an hour,
    Thats a ridiculous charge out rate for a normal welding job. A standard welder rate is or should not be more than R 550.00/hour.
    On all other charges I have to agree with you. The arduous travelling to the job and the excessive wear & tear on ones own vehicle can easily justify the higher charge out rate.
    It always amazes me that people just jump into a vehicle and expect it to perform in all types of terrain whilst not bothering to learn even the basics of vehicle maintenance.Failing to plan is planning to fail.

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    Default Re: Etosha Roads cause havoc

    Goeie nuus is dat die paaie in Etosha almal geskraap is deur die vermelde groep. Ek was die naweek in die Panne en ń 100% verbetering.
    Hoe lank voordat die paaie weer m&%$toe is is ń ope vraag, want die huur karre @ 120 km/h en met bande by die 300Psi is baie
    Daar is sprake van ń soortgelyke aksie vir die Solitaire , Sossosvlei pad.

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    Default Re: Etosha Roads cause havoc

    Quote Originally Posted by Innie bos View Post
    During my recent tour to Namibia (Tubatsane Tours) we came onto some of the worst roads in Namibia from Okaukueju to Olifantsrus.
    One of my clients Land Cruiser Amason front left wheel bearing collapsed. We managed to get some help from Otjiwarongo.
    I know people need to make a living and we much appreciate their willingness to help but... To say everything comes at a price is true.
    It cost my client approximately R9200.00 for the travelling (600km [email protected] Otjiwarongo and back), (Labour 1.30 [email protected]) and the Outer bearing. Luckily the inner bearing was still fine as the mechanic came with the wrong inner bearing and wanted to charge my client for it.
    The park also charged them for the night at R350pppn staying at the picnic site as the camp was fully booked.

    If you guys think its a fair price please convince me as am still want to find the people that is willing to help at a reasonable price.

    From my understanding the roads are being graded now, why wait till there is an outcry from all over.
    Don't you think you are a bit ungrateful ?

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