Would be hijackers have found a new way to prey on unsuspecting motorists. This new hijacking method has been called the “tap-tap” method.
The hijackers “tap-tap” method
This method is often used with a female driver as a decoy. The alleged hijacker will tap the back of your car while in traffic. It is best not to get out of your car right away to assess the damage. Rather drive to a busy and public location to check your car.
Gauteng was recently reported as the province with the highest number of hijackings in 2018. During the 2017/2018 year it was reported that 45 cars were hijacked every day in South Africa.
Safety tips to avoid a hijacking
Don’t get so close to home
Hijackers sometimes follow their victims home. If you have been followed, it’s best to put on the indicator and slowly stop approximately two kilometres from your house.
The car behind you will have to go around you and any potential hijacker would lose any criminal interest.
Always see the wheels in front of you
When stopping make sure you see the back wheels of the car in front of you. This will give you enough space to get out of danger should the worst case happen.
Leave the car running and key in the ignition
Ideally, the safest option would be having a remote controlled gate that you could open safely from inside your car. Many people still make use of a manual gate.
Unless there is a child in the car, leave the car engine running with the keys in the ignition. All while you manually open your gate.
What to do during a hijacking
If you find that you are being hijacked there are some tips that might help you.
Try your best to stay calm
Don’t antagonise the hijacker by losing your temper, threatening or challenging the hijacker. In most cases, hijackers just want to get the car and go.
No eye contact
Most hijackers will consider making eye contact as a threat. Making eye contact might also let the hijackers know that you’re trying to remember their features and they might retaliate.
Do exactly as you are told
Don’t resist the hijacker, especially if they have a weapon. Calmly comply with their orders.
Keep your hands visible
If stopped by a hijacker, lift up your arms. This shows you have no weapon and that you surrender. In addition, keep your hands where the hijacker can see them at all times. This will show that you are not a threat.
No sudden movements
No matter how tempting it may be, don’t quickly reach for the valuable items in your car. Don’t make any sudden movements. The hijacker might see this as a threat and retaliate.
Make mental notes of hijacker
Without posing a threat, try to make as many mental notes about the hijackers as possible. For example; what were they wearing? How many were there? From which direction did they come from? Which direction did they run? How many weapons were there? And what kind of weapons were they?
(Source: The South African)