- Hijacking doesn’t happen only to cars and trucks
- Be alert – and ready to ride away
- Pillion riders aren’t always as they seem
JOHANNESBURG, Gauteng – An alert has been issued by a motorcycling group about an increase in hijackings in the Kempton Park area, east of central Johannesburg.
Road safety group MasterDrive told Carman’s Corner in a media release that bikers have been shot in the head and pushed off their bikes by motorcycle-mounted thugs. Even though some of the hijackers have been caught it is still important for all bikers to take cognisance of the risk of a motorbike hijacking.
So, MasterDrive has issued some suggestions on how to avoid such danger – a very said development on South Africa’s beautiful biking roads…
- Don’t assume every fellow biker is friendly.
- Be alert if a biker pulls up alongside you with a pillion aboard.
- Don’t allow yourself to be boxed-in in traffic; if another biker starts to dismount near you pull away immediately if it’s safe to do so.
- If you suspect you are being followed pull in at the nearest safe haven – fuel station, for instance.
- Make sure before you stop that the way is clear for escape from danger.
MasterDrive says bikers should not believe they are invincible – every tip which applies to car drivers applies to them as, too:
- Be aware. Take note of people who may be following you.
- Be wary of pedestrians by traffic lights, near your home, or standing around as you approach.
- Slow down to try to avoid a complete stop at a traffic light.
- Make sure your driveway is well-lit and clear of shrubbery.
- Vary your route to work.
MasterDrive’s managing director Eugene Herbert, himself a biker, says motorcyclists should avoid falling into the trap of believing hijacking only happens to cars and trucks.
“It’s this notion that makes them vulnerable to criminals,” he said. “Bikers should be just as aware and prepared for a hijack as a car driver.
“It is near impossible to communicate over the noise of the bike while you are wearing a helmet. As such, bikers can be even more vulnerable to injury if confronted. They must be as aware of what is happening around them and be ready to respond to a threat.”
MasterDrive, to cater for this increasing phenomenon has a training programme to accommodate bikers. “Together,” the organisation says, “we can work to create safer roads for all.”