WATCH | Hijackers caught on camera - and nabbed in 13 minutes

11 July 2019 - 08:27
By Nonkululeko Njilo

A video showing robbers' every move during a daylight hijacking near the London Road exit on the N3 in Johannesburg has proved how technology can be used to put criminals behind bars.

National roads agency Sanral shared dramatic footage of armed men - who were caught by cameras managed by the agency's traffic centre - hijacking another vehicle. They were followed by the Johannesburg metro police and caught in 13 minutes, according to the agency.     

Sanral's Vusi Mona said the agency had installed cameras in the Western Cape, KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng. Apart from catching criminals, Mona said the cameras would also assist motorists to better navigate their way through busy traffic, among other functions.

Mona said there were 294 CCTV cameras across Gauteng, which operate 24 hours a day.

"The FMS [Freeways Management System] is active on about 251km of freeways in Gauteng and currently includes 10 incident response units, 10 towing recovery units, eight heavy recovery units and six motorcycle medical response units stationed at strategic points on the freeways. All these units are comprised of highly trained first responders with specialised equipment and are operational 24 hours every day," he said.

The agency said the FMS system dealt with an average of 3,000 traffic-related incidents per month, with the majority of these being stationary vehicles on the freeways.

While the main reason for the FMS system was to control traffic, Mona said it also detected crashes, which made up about 15% of the total incidents on the Gauteng freeway network.

The agency said its CCTV cameras had enabled it to respond to a variety of incidents including saving lives where collisions occur, and saving congestion and commuter time.