Sunday, 18 March 2012

Keeping yourself safe in South Africa...

Living in South Africa can become very interesting with all the criminal activity we live with on a daily basis, below are some pointers (I will continue to add as I think of them) the rest of the world might not know, if your coming to SA the following might be of use to you too:
  • If something looks to good to be true it probably is
  • If someone looks dodgy they probably are, feel no shame in rolling up the window
  • Never give out money without a product in front of you, unless if your willing to part with the money should the product not arrive
  • Stay away from area's that give you that sixth sense of something being wrong.
  • Any foreign objects outside your house, like empty can's, wrappers, bottle's can be indicators used by criminals to mark the status of a property
  • Keeping your car windows open about an inch makes them stronger and therefore less likely to break when struck with something
  • Keep your eyes open at when stopping at a red light, smash-and-grab criminals love highway off-ramps and red lights
  • Keep your car windows rolled-up as high possible to avoid someone being able to reach into the car
  • If you turn into your property and wait for a gate to open ensure there are no suspect cars around, if possible stay in the road and turn in once the gate is open to avoid being boxed-in by a hijackers car
  • Criminals usually like to operate in gangs, if you only see one you can be sure he has a buddy watching/helping somewhere close by
  • Avoid replacing house windows secured with window putty if your going away soon, soft putty is easy to scrape off, allowing the window pane to be removed
  • Armed reaction companies take around 5 to 10 minutes before they arrive at your property to investigate an alarm, this is plenty of time for criminals to take quite a bit from your house and vanish
  • Noisy evenings eg. firework celebrations, provide a perfect time for criminals to operate without being heard
  • Ensure all gardening equipment your may have is safely locked away, these have been known to become the tool of choice if lying around. During my youth they broke into a car next door using a sprinkler stolen from someone's garden.
  • Keep your car doors locked, recently a lady was abducted by two people jumping into the back of her car at a red light
  • Try to avoid malls during the festive season, malls robberies are common during these times. I experienced this twice when they robbed a jewelry in a local mall
  • South African criminals can be extremely violent - killing for little reason, using axes to open cash vans, using explosives to blow up hundreds of ATM's every year, etc - If possible give them what they want and avoid confronting them, your life is more important than purchased goods - Giving them what they want here unfortunately doesn't mean you won't be harmed...

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