Gauteng blasts way to top spot

Sibongile Mashaba

Sibongile Mashaba

Gauteng has recorded the highest number of ATM blasts in South Africa with a record 154 explosions in six months or 61percent of ATM attacks nationally.

The figures are contained in the statistics released yesterday to Sowetan by the South African Banking Risk Information Centre (Sabric).

To date, 252 ATMs have been blown up with KwaZulu-Natal recording 17 blasts. Figures from other provinces were still being compiled by Sabric.

Even as the statistics were being released, a gang of eight men successfully bombed two of the three ATMs they targeted in Gauteng yesterday morning.

In the first incident, about eight heavily-armed men robbed a garage of an undisclosed amount of money after a botched Nedbank ATM blast on the corner of the R554 and Heidelberg Road in Elsburg.

The same gang may have attacked an FNB ATM at 2.30am in Steeldale near Rosettenville and an Absa ATM in Walkerville at about 4am.

Institute for Security Studies senior researcher Johan Burger said ISS research showed that the number of ATM blasts would quadruple this year.