Big increase in smash-and-grabs in wealthy Joburg suburbs

The Randburg and Sandton SAPS have once again flagged vehicle-related incidents as an ongoing cause of concern, particularly in the Bryanston area.

Steven Bronks, community development manager for Fidelity ADT said key areas of concern are at high-activity intersections particularly at the William Nicol, Grosvenor and Main Road intersection and along key intersections on Rivonia Road.

In many instances firearms are being used but these have been found to be toy guns in a number of instances, he said.

“Just because there are many cars in an intersection, it does not mean you are safe.

“Motorists are reminded to remain vigilant at all times. A number of these incidents have occurred when motorists are distracted on their phones,” said Bronks.

Below he outlined several points to remember when facing a smash-and-grab situation:

  • Keep your boot locked at all times, otherwise it is very easy while you are parked in traffic for the criminals to just open your boot and grab and run;
  • Keep valuables such as handbags, laptops, sports bags in the boot of your car;
  • Keep off your phone at intersections and remain vigilant;
  • Lock all your doors and never open vehicle windows or doors for strangers;
  • Avoid opening your windows or getting involved in discussions with street vendors or anyone handing out flyers;
  • Be wary of people standing at intersections;
  • If you encounter obstacles such as rocks or tyres do not get out of your vehicle to remove them; immediately reverse and drive off in the opposite direction;
  • Leave a gap between you and the car in front of you to give you room to escape if you need to.

“If you are involved in an incident remember not to become aggressive or struggle for your possessions,” said Bronks.

“Letting the criminal take your handbag or cell phone could save your life. What’s important is that you report the incident to the police as soon as possible. The SAPS rely on intelligence to manage hotspots and trends,” he said.

Read: South Africa ranks in the bottom 20 countries for safety and security

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Big increase in smash-and-grabs in wealthy Joburg suburbs