Motorists need to be vigilant of their surroundings at all times. It could mean the difference between a traffic accident and a near-miss. Unfortunately we need to be vigilant for more reasons than one; and hijacking is such a case.
A hijacking can be over in a matter of seconds or minutes, during which, both the perpetrator and the victim have one thing in mind – survival.
You need to do your utmost to stay calm if you find yourself in this situation. Do exactly what the hijackers tell you and don’t act in such a way that may aggravate them. Don’t scream or make sudden movements, keep your hands in plain sight and avoid eye contact. Your life and the lives of those around you should be your top priority.
Here are some tips for avoiding a hijacking situation:
- Always travel with the car doors locked.
- Leave enough room between your car and the one in front to avoid being boxed in. (A general rule of thumb for this is to make sure you can see where the tyres of the car in front make contact with the road.)
- Attract the attention of other motorists or pedestrians if you think you are in danger. You can use the hooter, flash your lights, put your emergency lights on or shout.
- Be aware of anybody who approaches your car or is loitering near traffic lights, stop streets, parking areas or your driveway.
- If you suspect that you are being followed, you should ideally drive to the nearest police station. If this is not possible, drive to a safe place, but don’t go home.
These tips were provided by the SAPS.
Hijacking involves planning and the criminals are likely to have more experience, thus having more control over themselves and you. Check back next week for part two and more tips on how to avoid a hijacking.
‘Til then, safe travels!