SAFETY AND SECURITY

REDUCE YOUR RISK

If each person focuses on lowering their crime risk and keeping their home well secured, the ripple effect is a safer community for all.

According to the SAPS incidence reports, the crimes that are most affecting Sandton residents are car jamming, theft out of motor vehicles, smash and grabs, house robberies and house burglaries (often resulting from inside information) and hijackings. It is well worth remembering that many crimes are opportunistic and can be avoided. There is always a risk that even if you take the most stringent precautions you may still be at the receiving end of crime, but let’s make it as difficult as possible for them.

  • Be vigilant when driving. Put your mobile phone away and take notice of your surroundings. Check your mirrors to ensure you aren't being followed home and scan your environment when you stop at a traffic light.
  • If you suspect you are being followed home, go to your nearest police station or phone your security company to escort you home. Once you are in your driveway, the exit can be blocked by would-be hijackers and you won't have an escape route.
  • If you see a vehicle that looks suspicious (driving slowly through your area, three or four occupants), phone your security company immediately and report it. Try and get the registration number and note the make and colour of the vehicle, but NEVER approach the vehicle directly. You could prevent a crime taking place.
  • Turn on your house alarm early and lock your security gates.
  • Use your green belt. The more activity in these areas, the less attractive they will be for vagrants and criminals.
  • Make sure your phone is up to date with the correct emergency contact numbers.
  • Send your domestic worker and gardener on the Domestic Watch programme. Contact the Sandton CPF at admin@sandtoncpf.co.za to find out the venue of your nearest Domestic Watch.
  • Be careful about who has access to your home. Change locks, keys, keypad codes and passwords if necessary. Studies show that many residential crimes are due to inside information. People who could have access to your property include disgruntled ex-employees, service providers, removal companies and contractors.
  • Set up a WhatsApp group for your road or enclosure to share security information with your neighbours. Use it for security only, otherwise people may leave the group due to receiving too many messages and irrelevant information.

FIREWORKS LEGISLATION

During the festive season, fireworks may only be used on Christmas Eve (from 7pm to 10pm), Day of Goodwill (from 7pm to 10pm), New Year’s Eve (from 11pm to 1am) and New Year’s Day (from 7pm to 10pm).

JMPD spokesman Chief Superintendent Wayne Minnaar.Minnaar says Metro police officers are responsible for enforcing by-laws, while Johannesburg Emergency Management Services personnel respond to injuries and fires caused, in this case, by fireworks.

Minnaar has appealed to the public to behave in a responsible manner so they can enjoy the festivities. The following are some of the provisions in the City by-laws regulating the use of fireworks:

  • No person may deal in fireworks unless he or she holds the required fireworks licence in terms of the Explosives Act;
  • No person under age of 16 must use explosives without adult supervision;
  • Fireworks must not be used near animals inside any building, on agricultural holdings or in public places. Fireworks must not be used within 500m of an explosives factory or storage facility, petrol depot or petrol station, school, old age home or hospital. 
  • Fines of between R500 and R1500 will be issued to anyone who contravenes any of the city's bylaws. According to the City of Joburg, "No person may terrify or cause stress or fear to any dog with fireworks or by any other means."
  • Fireworks must always be used in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions.
  • Fireworks should be handled by adults and children should watch the display from a distance. To stage a public fireworks display, organisers need written permission from the Fireworks Working Committee or Chief Fire Officer in their region.
  • Fireworks are legally permitted on days of cultural and religious celebrations, including Diwali, Chinese New Year, Human Rights Day, Guy Fawkes Day, Christmas Eve and the Day of Goodwill. However, the fireworks may only be set off at stipulated times (2017 times to be confirmed).

To report contravention of fireworks legislation or an emergency related to fireworks, contact the JMPD via CoJ Emergency Connect on 011 375 5911.

Sources:
www.joburg.org.za
www.ewn.co.za

COMMUNICATE WITH YOUR COMMUNITY

One of the most effective ways that residents can communicate with one another on security matters is through a WhatsApp group, which link communities together in real time. If you would like some advice on how to set up a WhatsApp security group for your neighbourhood, street or road closure,  please contact the Sandton CPF at admin@sandtoncpf.co.za.