Hijackers are taking hostages

Tracker reports 5438 vehicles recovered, 1037 arrests and 50 firearms recovered for the twelve months from July 2018 to June 2019.

The company that has devices installed in over 1.1 million vehicles has released statistics regarding vehicle theft and hijacking to warn South African motorist of the latest trends in these crimes. Indicated in the findings, the provinces, Gauteng, Kwa-Zulu Natal and the Western Cape encounter the most vehicle crime in the country. Gauteng suburbs most affected by hijackings are Kensington, Arcadia and Eldorado Park while the most affected suburbs in Kwa-Zulu Natal are Sydenham, Imbali and Avoca Hills. Philippi, Khayelitsha and Maitland are where the most hijackings take place in the Western Cape. According to the report, most hijackings take place on a Friday in between 11:00 and 14:00 and then increases again from 20:00 to 23:00 on the same day.

A recent trend that has been noted in the index is the increase in hostage-taking during hijackings. Within Tracker’s activations, 29% of hijackings result in vehicle occupants being taken, hostage. Some of the latest techniques used by hijackers include impersonating law enforcement officials, spiking of drinks and using online vehicle selling platforms to prey on unsuspecting victims.

“Many people go about their regular driving activity on auto-pilot without much awareness or consideration for what is going on around them. Criminals recognise and take advantage of this complacency. To avoid being an easy target, we need to stay alert and be vigilant. Avoid distractions while driving and pay attention to your surroundings. Don’t believe it could never happen to you,” Ron Knott-Craig, Executive Operational Services at Tracker South Africa.

Gauteng also features at the top of the list for vehicle theft with Pretoria CBD, Arcadia and Sunnyside featuring as the suburbs with the most vehicle theft tracker activations. The suburbs of Glenwood, Morningside and Musgrave in Kwa-Zulu Natal and Philippi, Claremont and Dunoon in the Western Cape are also listed on the report as suburbs with the most vehicle theft activations. Most of vehicle theft activations within the sample group take place mainly on a Saturday between 12:00 and 14:00. In most vehicle theft activations, the primary motivation is to gain access to fast-moving consumables.

“Should an incident occur, report it to your tracking company and authorities as soon as possible. Also, try to remember as much detail as possible to provide a good description to authorities, such as the location where the crime occurred, clothing and appearance of the hijackers, and any other information that may assist authorities in identifying and apprehending the perpetrators. Also, Crime Stop is a SAPS toll-free number and can be contacted to anonymously report criminal activities on 08600 10111, or send an anonymous SMS to Crime Line at 32211,” Ron Knott-Craig, Executive Operational Services at Tracker South Africa.


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