We’re more than a little nervous to be on the road right now. Between the recent downpouring of rain and the shock killing of a police officer on the N2, driving just does not feel safe. But since it is necessary for us to get to work, home and everywhere in between, we do need to be on the road. We’ve rounded up some tips to help keep you safe while out on the road.
Perhaps one of the more important tips to remember is to be aware of your surroundings. Be sure to take note of anything unusual which may be a trap to encourage drivers to pull over. This may have been the case in the recent incident on the N2. It was reported police officer Petrus Holz, 50, had pulled over to fix two punctured tyres.
The AA warns: “Hijackers have developed a number of unconventional methods to get people out of their vehicles. This should always be considered if an unusual incident occurs on the road, or when entering and exiting a property. Some common tactics include: cable tying gates shut, throwing eggs or some other substance at vehicles to obscure driver, as well as staging minor accidents and leaving objects in the road.
“These methods are all designed to get car occupants to stop their vehicles and get out of the car. If you are ever in any doubt as to the reason a suspicious event has occurred, do not stop your vehicle. Rather call your security company or the police and let them evaluate the situation.”
Other safety tips while driving include:
- Keep the doors locked and windows closed at all times. Be especially cautious in the city centre, where you’re more likely to stop at traffic lights and be surrounded by people. Don’t roll your window down if someone tries to get your attention.
- Be familiar with your route before you start your trip. Enter your destination into your GPS before you leave home so you aren’t fiddling with it while you drive.
- Do not leave any valuables in your car. Rather store everything in your boot where it is out of sight. But be cautious when it comes time to remove what you need from the boot; make sure it is safe to do so. If you feel unsafe putting your handbag in the boot when you return to the car, rather get in quickly and lock the doors.
- Make sure to have car alarms and anti-theft devices fitted. Also be sure to keep a gear lock or steering lock handy to keep your car extra secure.
Remember, your life is more valuable than your car and possession. If you do find yourself in a dangerous situation, get out as quickly as possible. The thieves are likely to stay close to your valuable and allow you to get away safely.