The Department is concerned about mechanical breakdowns that leave motorists vulnerable to criminals along the City’s roadways. Read more below:
The City of Cape Town’s Metro Police Department notes with concern the continued trend of stationary vehicles along major routes in the city.
The reasons are varied and include people stopping to take calls, dropping or picking up people or because they’ve experienced mechanical problems or run out of fuel.
The City reminds the public that it is illegal to stop on a freeway. In addition, it also makes motorists vulnerable to possible criminal attacks – particularly on the N2 and R300 which have become hot spots in recent years.
In the first three weeks of December, the Freeway Management System cameras detected 454 stationary vehicles along the shoulder of the N2 and R300. No reasons were established for 66 of the incidents. Of the remaining 388, most were ‘stop and go’ incidents and drop offs or pick-ups. A total of 114 were confirmed cases of vehicle troubles including mechanical failure, flat tyres and running out of fuel.‘We understand that there are factors that are beyond the control of the average motorist, but I urge people to plan their routes carefully and to check basic maintenance aspects on a regular basis. Check tyre pressure when you’re filling up and always make sure you have enough fuel. While the City’s enforcement agencies patrol the major routes, criminals pounce in a split second and so if it’s possible to avoid having to stop along the road during a journey, please don’t,’ said the City’s Mayoral Committee Member for Safety and Security, Alderman JP Smith.
On Saturday 17 December 2016, two Metro Police Officers came to the assistance of a stranded motorist and her four-month-old baby along the R300. The Officers waited until the woman’s brother arrived and then helped them tow the vehicle. One of the Officers also gave the motorist a courtesy call a few hours later to enquire about her and the baby’s well-being.
‘The motorist brought the incident to our attention and expressed her gratitude to the staff members. This is but one example of how our staff assist the public. There’ve even been instances where Officers have driven to filling stations to buy petrol for stranded motorists to help them on their way again. The City is happy to help, but we appeal to motorists to do everything possible to ensure that they have a safe journey, including making sure their cars are in good condition and that cellphones are charged and contain the number for the City’s 107 call centre so they can call for help should they be stranded.
‘I want to remind visitors to Cape Town to be vigilant too. Know where you’re going before you depart, don’t stop and ask just anyone for directions in the event that you get lost. Look for a filling station or police station instead and please, while driving, make sure that valuables are kept well out of sight,’ added Alderman Smith.
The 107 Public Emergency Communication Centre can be contacted by dialling 021 480 7700 from a cellphone and 107 from a landline.