At least 20 people were killed and about a dozen others injured when two van-taxis and a truck slammed into each other on a South African highway in the predawn hours of Tuesday, police said.

Two children were among the dead and the cause of the accident that took place northeast of Cape Town is under investigation.

This is an appalling tragedy. There are whole families that get wiped out in these accidents, Western Cape transport official Robin Carlisle told news website Eyewitness News.