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Juliet McGuire

Are you driving the most hijacked car in the country?

Being hijacked is a fear we probably all share. One of the many fears we have to face in this country, unfortunately. An article I read over the weekend shared the list of most hijacked cars in South Africa. What I want to know is, what are the actual numbers though?

Let me start by giving you the list of most hijacked cars in South Africa according to Ctrack:

MOST HIJACKED CARS IN SOUTH AFRICA

Volkswagen Polo
Toyota Hilux
Ford Ranger
BMW X5
Chevrolet Spark

THE TOP TEN MOST HIJACKED PASSENGER VEHICLE BRANDS IN SA

  1. Volkswagen
  2. Toyota
  3. Ford
  4. Citroen
  5. Kia
  6. Hyundai
  7. BMW
  8. Audi
  9. Renault
  10. Chevrolet

The problem I have with these lists is that it sends panic to those who drive or own these cars. But what isn’t mentioned is the fact that the likes of Volkswagen and Toyota are by far the most popular brands in this country. The amount of cars they sell will translate in to more hijackings, it is a numbers thing. It doesn’t mean that if you drive a Volkswagen Polo, you are necessarily more likely to be hijacked. Surely?!

Of course, you need to be cautious, but this goes for any car you’re driving. It is more about where and how you are driving than the car you are driving.

Suzuki reported on the number of ways hijackers can target you, even if your car isn’t a high risk vehicle. Executive head of Dial Direct, Warwick Scott-Rodger, the top five hijacking trends right now are:

1. Vehicles hijacked at fuel stations

Drivers filling up with fuel at fuel stations are often targeted by hijackers. . They approach the driver from his or her blindspot and force them out of the vehicle. It’s difficult for petrol attendants to intervene as many hijackers are armed.

2. The dangers of strangers

Vehicle owners can be approached at social spots by strangers who befriend them, later spike their drinks, and then steal their keys and make off with their vehicle.

3. Fake blue lights

Hijackers pose as traffic officers or police officials and get vehicle owners to pull over. They often drive in unmarked vehicles and once drivers pull over, they are overpowered and their vehicles are hijacked.

4. Hijacked at home

Vehicle owners are overpowered in their homes and vehicles are taken along with other possessions.

5. Vehicles hijacked after driver is followed home

Hijackers follow vehicles home, box owners in their driveway, and then hijack them. Hijackers often wait for the owner to enter the property and then block the security gate from closing.

And like I mentioned earlier, there are certain areas you need to be more vigilant.

JOHANNESBURG’S WORST HIJACKING AREAS

  1. Booysens – 250 Incidents
  2. Jeppe – 238 Incidents
  3. Ivory Park – 163 Incidents
  4. Dobsonville, Soweto – 155 Incidents
  5. Moffatview – 155 Incidents
  6. JHB Central – 151 Incidents
  7. Honeydew – 149 Incidents

CAPE TOWN’S WORST HIJACKING AREAS

  1. Nyanga – 257 Incidents
  2. Harare – 173 Incidents
  3. Delft – 164 Incidents
  4. Gugulethu – 157 Incidents
  5. Khayelitsha – 145 Incidents
  6. Philippi East – 136 Incidents
  7. Lingelethu-West SAPS – 104 Incidents
  8. Mfuleni – 103 Incidents
  9. Kraaifontein – 63 Incidents
  10. Milnerton – 63 Incidents

TSHWANE’S WORST HIJACKING AREAS

  1. Soshanguve – 192 Incidents
  2. RIETGAT – 156 Incidents
  3. Akasia – 148 Incidents

DURBAN’S WORST HIGHJACKING AREAS

  1. Pinetown – 238 Incidents
  2. Umlazi – 153 Incidents
  3. Umbilo – 149 Incidents
  4. Berea – 129 Incidents
  5. Chatsworth – 128 Incidents
  6. Sydenham – 126 Incidents
  7. Newlands East – 108 Incidents
  8. ISIPINGO – 103 Incidents
  9. Greenwood Park – 97 Incidents
  10. Empangeni – 86 Incidents

With 46 cars hijacked a day in this country, that’s one every 32 minutes, you really cannot afford to be lax about it. Don’t freak out if you drive a Volkswagen Polo or a Toyota Hilux, just be aware of your surroundings and take precaution. You might not be able to avoid a hijacking altogether, but there are things you can do that could save your life.

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