Police to patrol bridges to curb rock-throwing
Police officers will be stationed on bridges across Durban to curb “alarming incidents” of rock-throwing‚ the eThekwini Municipality said on Friday morning.
This comes in the wake of number of such incidents in recent weeks‚ one of which claimed the lives to two siblings on the N2 freeway near Ballito‚ north of Durban‚ in December. Attacks have largely been in Durban‚ but have spread to Gauteng.
eThekwini spokeswoman Tozi Mthethwa said the stationing of the officers came as the result of an agreement between SAPS‚ the Road Traffic Inspectorate and the city’s Metro Police. The joint operation would‚ she said‚ “beef up patrols along key routes and bridges”.
According to the city’s assessment‚ the motive behind these incidents was to hijack vehicles.
“The modus operandi is that‚ once a rock is thrown‚ the motorist is forced to stop. After which‚ they may be attacked. Other possible motives are being investigated by the relevant law enforcement agencies‚” said Mthethwa.
The extra manpower comes as the city finalises plans to erect steel cages over bridges.
“As part of a more sustainable long-term solution to the problem‚ the city is looking at constructing steel cages over bridges‚ erecting closed-circuit television cameras and improving lighting on bridges. This will be subject to normal council procedures and availability of funding‚” deputy mayor Fawzia Peer said.
Metro Police urged motorists to be observant when approaching bridges and not to stop under any circumstance‚ but rather to remain calm and drive to the nearest police station or service station from where they can call police.
Any suspicious activity can be reported to the municipality’s Emergency Call Centre on 031 361 0000.