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Hijacked in SA: 15 tips to save your life

2015-07-17 11:57

WHAT TO DO IF YOU'RE TAKEN: The live-saving tips could mean the difference between life and death on SA's deadly roads. Image: Shutterstock

The risk of being hijacked is a very real concern for South Africans despite police efforts to the contrary and the next in line just could be you.

Research by Arrive Alive reports that most hijackings occur between 5pm and 8pm when most drivers are on their way home from work.

So, what should you do if you believe your are being hijacked? Arrive Alive and the South African Police Service have some live-saving advice.


Arrive Alive said: "It's important to note that most hostages and/or victims of hijacking survive the incident and are eventually released/rescued. In most instances, injuries and deaths are the result of actions taken by the victims.

"There are guidelines that could increase a victim’s chances of survival and decrease the risk of humiliation, discomfort and injury."

Hijack/hostage victims experience anxiety, confusion and, in worst cases, physical harm. It's common to try to resist or retaliate but, Arrive Alive says, such actions could be fatal.


Hijackers might release you moments after the initial attack or you could be held for days so you need to prepare mentally in the event of being isolated from your family.

Arrive Alive said: "Prepare yourself to be alone and isolated from your family, friends and loved ones and to lose track of time and place. Perpetrators can be anxious and have a tendency to over-react."

The SAPS released the following guide in support of actions that might be taken by hostage negotiators.

Read these live-saving tips:

1 Comply with everything the perpetrators tell you to do.
2 Remain calm, avoid panic.
3 Try at all times to maintain your pride, dignity and self-respect.
4 Keep your brain active by focusing on your family, day-dreaming and/or reading anything you're offered.
5 Maintain your physical strength by eating any food provided by your captor(s).
6 Try to maintain a sense of humour but don't ridicule aggressors.
7 Note your movements, direction, time and place.
8 Try to maintain a routine and remain fit, if circumstances permit.
9 Fall flat and remain submissive if attacked.
10 Don't threaten or provoke your captor(s).
11 Don't try to be a hero.
12 Don't engage in any whispered conversations with the perpetrators.
13 Don't use foreign concepts or languages; this could arouse the captors’ suspicions.
14 Don't make any demands.
15 Don't be sympathetic towards your captors’ cause.


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