Watch out for muggers

Sheryl Heginbotham, Plumstead

As a mother, I would like to warn all school children and college students that there are muggers on the loose on the Metrorail southern line.

My son was grabbed and robbed of his cellphone on his way home from college. Two grown men, unable to speak English, grabbed his arm and forcibly took his cellphone. The incident was reported at Wynberg police station on Friday March 24.

It is time that Metrorail took some steps to increase security and protect children and commuters who use public transport to get to school and to work.

Riana Scott, spokesperson for Metrorail responds:

We thank Mrs Heginbotham for reporting the issue to Metrorail and SAPS.

Crime is on the increase, in general. Trains are unfortunately not exempted from random and opportunistic criminal attempts. It is procedure to investigate each reported incident to determine corrective and preventive actions with resources available to us.

Metrorail security resources on trains and stations are allocated strategically on a similar basis as general policing. Police/security is not able to be everywhere at once – instead they are posted according to predetermined priority areas. Proactive deployment of joint security resources is based on intelligence; reactive measures in response to reported incidents, hence the importance of reporting each and every incident no matter how trivial.

We also inform the Rapid Rail Police Unit during our weekly meetings to allocate static, mobile and/or undercover resources according to priorities determined at these meetings.

* Wynberg Police were asked for comment on Monday and Tuesday March 27 and 28 but did not provide any by the time this edition went to print.