Jack Dunwoody, Tokai
A car was stolen and another broken into in the car park while we were hiking on the non-pay side of Silvermine on Monday March 29. It would be good to warn the public.
I am the leader of a U3A False Bay hiking group called Mountain Mondays and led a hike of 11 people from the car park to Muizenberg Cave and back. When I arrived at 7.45am the boom had been opened but there was no guard present.
The guard often comes after we set off at 8am but is there when we return. The walk took three hours or so and when we did return to the car park there was still no guard and one of our lady’s cars was gone, clearly stolen, as where it had been parked was littered with glass from someone smashing one of its windows to gain entry to the locked vehicle.
I am concerned that there was no security this morning at Gate 2. Gate 1 (dam side) was still closed following the lost hiker incident there, which is why I switched our walk to Gate 2.
Surely SANParks has a responsibility to keep our cars secure when we walk in one of their parks, especially in a major one such as Silvermine. Why was there no guard this morning as there usually is?
If it’s not safe to walk in Silvermine then SANParks has a major problem.
Babalwa Dlangamandla, Spokesperson: South African National Parks (SANParks) responds:
The area in question is part of an open access system which does not have a guard employed by SANParks rather by a volunteer guard that relies on donations from patrons. The volunteer guard is not under SANParks management and therefore his working hours are not regulated under SANParks.
Visitors are requested to familiarise themselves with the information boards in the area and ensure that no valuables are left in their vehicles. Safety of all visitors is important and we ask everyone to be vigilant. We kindly request all visitors to report any suspicious activities to our Emergency number 086 110 6417.
Kirstenhof Police spokesperson Sergeant Diedre Solomon responds:
The case was reported to us but it might be sent to Fish Hoek SAPS for investigation as they police Gate 2 of Silvermine.