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The City’s Safety and Security Directorate is primed to play a key role in the administration’s efforts to ensure public safety. 

The City of Cape Town’s Safety and Security Directorate is once again leading the charge to keep residents and visitors safe this festive season.

The City has, over many years, devised an operational plan that serves as a blueprint and guides enforcement efforts, but also general public safety priorities and other demands on the administration over this period, like cleaning services, traffic congestion and Events.

A summary of the operational plan is available here:

‘In just a few weeks, Cape Town will usher in the festive season with the traditional switching on of the lights event on the Grand Parade. This is one of the biggest events on our annual calendar, and but one of the many demands on our City services over the period. Apart from boots on the ground to ensure safety and security, there are road closures to manage, public safety assessments from a disaster risk perspective and even post-event clean up. Many of us will be enjoying some downtime after a long year, and we would like to express our gratitude to the thousands of City staff who will be working very hard behind the scenes to keep us safe,’ said Executive Mayor, Alderman Dan Plato.

Operationally, the Safety and Security Directorate chairs a multi-agency festive season coordination committee that meets regularly from October, with increased frequency in preparation for priority days during the festive season.

The committee is made up of representatives from a host of City departments, but also external agencies like the South African Police Service, the National Sea Rescue Institute, Emergency Medical Services and the Cape of Good Hope SPCA.

‘This is a mammoth undertaking because of the many demands that the festive season presents. Our operational readiness plan, combined with the years of experience represented at our coordinating committee meetings, as well as on the ground in the areas where we need them, have served us well.

‘For most of the year, we do public safety and enforcement in a particular way, but the holidays see a shift in trends and behaviour that we need to plan for. We would like to assure the public that we have their best interests at heart, but that we need them to work with us to ensure their safety, as well as the safety of others. And while it may be the season of festivities and good tidings, I also urge everyone to stay on the right side of the law, because our staff will not tolerate any anti-social, reckless or criminal behaviour,’ said Mayoral Committee Member for Safety and Security, Alderman JP Smith.

In December 2018, the Safety and Security Directorate’s enforcement services reported the following successes:

Cape Town Traffic Service

  • 494 arrests (332 for driving under the influence)
  • 12 700 warrants for arrests
  • 17 756 warrants served
  • 231 207 offences recorded

Metro Police Department

  • 262 arrests (91 for driving under the influence)
  • 1 747.25 units of drugs confiscated
  • 10 582 traffic and by-law offences recorded

Law Enforcement Department

  • 44 arrests
  • 20 308 section 341 notices issued
  • 2 714 section 56 notices to appear in court
  • 23 land invasions dealt with
  • 2 047 alarms responded to at City facilities

Fire and Rescue Service

  • 2 890 incidents responded to
  • 324 residential fires
  • 1 583 vegetation/rubbish fires
  • 548 motor vehicle accidents
  • 167 trauma cases
  • 98 medical emergencies

‘The statistics are a good indicator of the demands on our staff, but also which types of offences are rife. Next to drunk driving, offences like theft, robbery, possession of stolen goods and drugs account for many of the arrests made last December. Criminals cash in during this time of year, so the public needs to be vigilant at all times to avoid falling victim.

‘I’d also like to point to the number of arrests made last year around outstanding warrants. So a reminder to road users – increased vehicle check points and roadblocks are part and parcel of our festive season plan. If you have outstanding warrants, or if your vehicle is unlicensed or unroadworthy, you will be fined or arrested, depending on the circumstances. So please ensure that these administrative issues are seen to to avoid any unpleasant surprises,’ added Alderman Smith.

The City reminds the public to please save the number for the Public Emergency Communication Centre on their cellphones. The number to dial from a cellphone in the event of an emergency is 021 480 7700 (standard rates apply), and 107 from a landline.

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