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By Liam Ngobeni

Freelance journalist

Criminals using new method to access security complexes

Robbers have begun using an object to cover the sensor at an electrical gate which prevents the gate from closing.

A new method used by criminals to enter security complexes has been identified by police in Pretoria, reports Pretoria East Rekord.

This comes after a number of cases with the same modus operandi were reported since December last year, according to police spokesperson Captain Colette Weilbach.

“During investigations, it was established that in some cases the suspects used some object to cover the sensor at the electrical gate,” she said.

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This causes the gate to open when residents entered the complex, but prevents the gate from closing behind their vehicle. Criminals are then able to enter the complex.

“After the burglary or robbery, they will remove the object at the sensor and the gate will close again.”

Residents in private houses, as well as those living in security complexes, are advised to be attentive when entering gates.

Weilbach said it was important to double check that the gate closed behind the vehicle.

She provided the following advice to ensure safety when arriving home:

– Check your driveway and street before you leave or enter your premises. Be on the lookout for strangers loitering on the outside or unknown vehicles idling or parked on the pavements.

– If in doubt whether it is safe to open the gate, rather drive past and report the suspicious people, vehicles (especially ones without number plates) or circumstances to the police immediately by phoning the 10111 emergency number or contact a security provider.

– Make sure the driveway is well lit and clear of shrubbery where perpetrators can hide.

– Do not turn from the street into the driveway before the electrical gate is fully open –this will prevent anybody from boxing you in.

– Check the rear-view mirror regularly while driving to ensure nobody is following you home.

– If you suspect you are being followed, put your indicator on and slow down at least two to three houses prior to your home. By doing this, you force the vehicle behind you to pass and you can then get a better idea of their intentions. If the vehicle does not pass, drive on and observe the vehicle. Proceed to a busy location immediately and contact the police.

– Install CCTV cameras on such a level at the gate that will make it possible to identify the number plate of a vehicle and the people inside.

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