How to Handle Security Situations

What to do during an armed robbery

The likelihood of an armed robbery turning violent at places like a shopping centre, store, warehouse, factory, distribution centre, etc., (which may result in injuries to personnel and customers) can be effectively reduced by the behaviour of the victims.

  • DONT RESIST THE ROBBERS. Do exactly as you are told. The robbers are in control of the situation because they are armed, and it serves no purpose to resist their instructions – you will only be putting lives at risk.
  • RELAX. Regulate your breathing, taking long, slow deliberate breaths. This slows your heart rate, and helps you to relax.
  • SPEAK SLOWLY. Don't shout or raise your voice to the robbers. They are probably more nervous than you and it won’t take much for them to lose any self-control.
  • DON’T MAKE ANY SUDDEN MOVEMENTS. When you want to do something – even if it is upon instruction from the robber
    • Tell them what you are doing. For example: “I am going to take the keys out of my pocket now”
    • And then proceed slowly
  • DON’T SET OFF THE SIREN. Activate any alarms only if you can do so secretly and/or without being seen. Many armed robberies have turned violent (with hostages taken) because the audible siren puts the robbers into a panic.
  • DON’T LOOK THE ROBBER DIRECTLY IN THE FACE. The robber may believe that you are trying to memorise their features for later identification and this could lead to a violent reaction.
  • GIVE THE ROBBERS TIME TO LEAVE. Don’t shout or do anything else until the robbers have left the premises.
  • DON'T TRY TO BE A HERO. Don't attempt to prevent the robbers’ get-away. Many armed robberies have turned violent as the robbers are leaving, resulting in deaths and injuries to staff and customers.
  • REPORT THE INCIDENT TO THE SAPS. Unless a theft, robbery or incident is reported to SAPS and a case opened – it didn’t happen.
  • Comply with a robber’s demands. Remain calm and think clearly. Make mental notes of the robber’s physical description and other observations important to law enforcement officers.
  • If you have a silent alarm and can reach it without being noticed, use it. Otherwise, wait until the robber leaves.
  • Be careful, most robbers are just as nervous as you are

How to survive a hijacking situation

  • If confronted by hijackers, the aim is to survive the crime
  • Accept that you are going to lose your vehicle
  • Do not lose your cool and do not threaten or challenge the hijacker
  • Do exactly as told by the hijackers
  • Surrender your vehicle and move away. Remember property can be replaced. Lives cannot.
  • Don’t reach for your purse or valuables. This may threaten the hijackers and you may get hurt.

Thanks to SAPS, Coastal Security Services and ADT for the above Information.


     Site Last Updated:       11 July 2018      
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021 791 9300 or 021 791 8660

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Security Smile - “Wise Words for Would-be Robbers”

Our "Tongue in Cheek"  Security Tips


Here now is a summary of all the lessons you have been given on how to check out a house before breaking into it:

  1. Is the letterbox overflowing with mail? If it is, the occupants are probably away.
  2. Is the empty municipal wheely bin still outside in the road after a number of days?  Again, they’re probably away.
  3. Check under the frontdoor mat or in nearby potplants and see if there’s a key hidden there. There often is!
  4. Check the empty containers and boxes that don’t fit into the wheely bin, like new TV sets, home theatres, laptops. You can learn a lot from these.
  5. Are there outside lights burning during the day – especially day after day?  This is an advert to tell the world they’re not at home!
  6. At night, if there are bright outside lights burning all night or if the lights come on when you approach the house, choose another house without these.
  7. If there’s a light on inside the house, there might be someone in there wide awake – someone who might hear you trying to break in and sound the alarm. Avoid this house.
  8. If there’s a Neighbourhood Wtach sign outside rather go for the house of someone who isn’t a member.
  9. Look for laptops that are not covered up – that can be seen from  outside the house - and which can be grabbed in a flash.
  10. Use casual work opportunities to check for chances to break in at a later stage, and never give your employer you ID book to photocopy.
Remember, if householders are going to make it easier for us to break in, it’s our duty to take advantage or their carelessness!
This ‘tongue-in-cheek advice’ was provided by David Shreeve an ex member of HBNW.
Sep 2017: What is your greatest security concern?
Being the victim of a serious crime
Keeping my family and property safe at all times
Not knowing what crime is happening in Hout Bay
I donít have any security concerns

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63.7% - No - things are worse than they were a year ago
18.8% - I don't feel any different, one way or another
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