SMASH AND GRAB: Hijackings and smash-and-grab attacks have increased in SA. Image: iStock
A Gauteng motorist has been the victim of two smash & grab crimes. Here’s what she wishes she knew.
Centurion - I experienced a smash & grab (S&G) twice. The first S&G took place on the N14 off-ramp to the R55 in Centurion. It happened on a Friday night just after 7pm in May 2013.
The second S&G took place on Jean Avenue, Centurion at the N1 intersection (headed south). It was also Friday night just after 9pm in Dec 2015.
READ: Victim of smash & grab in SA? 13 ways to protect yourself
I guess I am partly to blame for the second incident as I didn’t learn a lesson from the first time:
A few pointers:
• When reporting the first crime, I was one of at least three women reporting a S&G. Coincidentally, another lady experienced the S&G at the location of my second S&G. Clearly, they’ve continued to operate in the same locations with success.
• I don’t think it is coincidental that I experienced both the S&G’s on a Friday and near an on/off ramp to the freeway.
• Also, my radio was turned up. When your volume is turned up, you do not hear the first few knocks against your window.
• Both locations are situated next to large embankments which makes an easy get-away.
• My bag was on the floor but they were still able to see it, smash my window, put their upper bodies through the window and grab the bag – all in under a minute.
Advice for motorists:
1 I do keep my bag in boot now and also, I keep my phone, license and other hard to replace items in separate compartments in my car.
2 Instead of standing stagnant at a robot, I try to slowly roll towards it.
3 I prefer the right lane when there’s two lanes.
4 If there people around, I keep my eye on them.
5 And; of course, the radio is not as loud.
Have you witnessed or been the victim of a smash & grab incident? Email us.
I must say that I have always been an “aware” driver but they do catch you off-guard.
Reporting the crime is important but I don’t think it does much for the police to send a vehicle there after and hour or 2. I do think it would benefit insurance companies if they invested in security around these area’s such aerial surveillance. They would at least be able to track the movements of these criminals by reviewing footage.