Stay ahead of hijackers with these nine savvy safety tips
Car thieves and hijackers can strike anywhere and at any time – take heed of these nine safety tips and make sure you don't become yet another victim
Car thieves and hijackers can strike anywhere and at any time. Don't believe it could never happen to you. Instead keep these safety tips in mind and always keep a vigilant eye open for suspicious characters – especially when travelling through more dangerous areas.
1: Be aware
Don't be an easy target. While driving, be vigilant about your surroundings. Also, be alert and on the lookout for suspicious persons or vehicles. Avoid distractions such as talking or texting on your mobile phone.
2: Seek sensible parking
Always park your vehicle in a well-lit, properly secured parking area, ideally with security guards on duty and as close to the entrances of the building as possible. When you leave your vehicle, make sure the doors are properly locked.
3: A little bit of planning goes a long way
Know where you are going and plan your journey in advance by ensuring you have the correct directions to your destination. You can also use apps like Google StreetView to see what your destination looks like – handy if you've never been there before.
4: Watch your tail
Pay close attention to ensure that you are not being followed. If you think you are being followed drive to a police station or a busy, well-lit area.
5: Don't be flash and advertise your cash
In some cases, hijackings and theft occur not for the vehicle itself but for the valuables inside – or on your person. Keep valuables out of sight in the boot or under the seats.
6: Drive on if you're not sure
If something looks suspicious as you're approaching your destination, rather drive off and come back later. Trust your gut – rather be a few minutes late than sorry.
7: Always be prepared
Have a back-up plan in case of an emergency.
8: Test your tech
Regularly test your tracking device to make sure it's working, including the assist button if your device has one.
9: Keep calm
If you are hijacked, remember your life is worth way more than your valuables, so keep calm, co-operate and try to get away as quickly as possible. Also remember to avoid eye contact with the offenders.
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