Johannesburg - Talks to resolve a strike by truck drivers will resume on Friday, employers and labour unions leaders said.
The @RoadFreightNegs twitter feed, updated by the Road Freight Employers Association (RFEA), stated on Thursday: "#RFEA & Unions to meet tomorrow @ 8:00 to resume talks".
SA Transport and Allied Workers Union (Satawu) spokesperson Vincent Masoga confirmed talks would resume on Friday.
About 20 000 workers in the road freight transport sector have been on strike over wages since Monday.
Sporadic violence has left at least seven people injured since the strike began.
Four people were injured on Thursday morning in Ekurhuleni, east of Johannesburg. Three people were injured on the R21 around 7:00 local time as striking truck drivers threw stones at passing trucks and blocked the road.
A truck driver not on strike broke his leg around 8:30 local time on Voortrekker Road after rolling his truck to avoid striking truck drivers, who were pelting his truck with stones and bricks.
Three people were hospitalised in Durban on Wednesday after a driver and his two assistants were injured as they tried to get away from striking drivers.
The driver tried to drive away from the protesters, but collided with a car before smashing into a tree.
Ekurhuleni EMS spokesperson Rogers Mamaila said: "The... incidents of strikers is so spread out, we might not know about all incidents. I know private ambulances have been attending (to) others."
More than 45 truck drivers were arrested on Thursday, Gauteng traffic police said.
"Charges include illegal marching... and public disturbance. It resulted in a serious accident that occurred an hour ago," said spokesperson Chief Bufaphi Nxumalo.
"We are still going to continue arresting them, especially if they are disturbing the public and marching without permission."
About 20 of those arrested were taken into custody on the R21.
The violence associated with the strike has been condemned.
The SA Chamber of Commerce and Industry (Sacci) said the unacceptable behaviour by striking truck drivers was nothing short of economic sabotage.
The chamber called on authorities to act decisively in protecting the country against intimidation and to prosecute perpetrators.
Sacci also urged unions to enforce discipline on striking members, as required by law.
Police Minister Nathi Mthethwa
said striking truck drivers who committed violence and broke the law would be acted against by law enforcement agencies.
"We are monitoring the situation and frankly, what we have been observing is pure criminality," said Mthethwa in a statement.
He said acts of violence and intimidating innocent people could not be justified as part of public protests, and police intend to act harshly against such lawlessness, with arrests imminent.
The Democratic Alliance condemned the violence linked to the strike, stating it was not acceptable.
Gauteng leader John Moodey
said in a statement that strikers and union members needed to be held accountable for their actions.
While the DA recognised the democratic right to strike, strikes could not be conducted in a violent and destructive manner, he said.
The Congress of SA Trade Unions urged strikers to avoid violence.
Spokesperson Patrick Craven said in a statement that while Cosatu fully supported striking unions, with Cosatu-aligned SA Transport and Allied Workers Union included, it appealed to workers not to resort to violence, even when provoked.
The SA Petroleum Industry Association (Sapia) said it had put contingency plans in place to maintain the supply of fuel, and hoped for a speedy resolution to the strike.
Unions reverted to a 12% pay demand after rejecting a lower offer tabled by employers on Tuesday.
The RFEA had proposed a staggered increase of 8.5% effective from March, and a further 0.5% from September next year.
The unions involved are Satawu, the Professional Transport and Allied Workers' Union SA, the Transport and Allied Workers' Union of SA, and the Motor Transport Workers' Union.
*Follow Fin24 on Twitter