Finding solutions together

The latest viral video doing the rounds was filmed on a dash-cam on Witkoppen Road, which has long been a bone of contention with ward councillors and residents in the area who claim the section of road is notorious for smash and grabs. The video shows just how these criminals operate and rang true for many. Since the video was posted, a number of motorists have said they are now more aware of their surroundings and more alert when stuck in traffic.

While this is admirable, the hype will eventually die down and motorists will go back to their old habits of keeping their valuables within arms reach of criminals and playing on their smartphones – oblivious to who is watching their every move.

While many residents reading this are probably thinking, “Not me, I know better and will always be alert”, the simple fact of human nature is that at some point, we will let our guard down – and rightfully so. We should not feel like prisoners in our own homes and vehicles – and while prevention is better than cure, the best solution is for communities to rid their areas of these criminals. Yes, this is easier said than done – but if we stick together, anything is possible.

We need to demand a police presence in areas we know are hijack or smash-and-grab hotspots, and encourage police to get creative in finding ways to catch the culprits. I long for a day when I can drive around Joburg with the wind in my hair and not have to close my window every time I approach an intersection or slow down.

We have some very intelligent police officers and I am confident that with a bit of support, we can claim back our roads, our communities, and our freedom.

Megan McLean
Group Editor

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