Washington, June 10 (ANI): Security expert Johan Burger has offered six safety tips for World Cup tourists to prevent pick pocketing, robberies, and muggings following the armed robbery of a group of World Cup journalists in their hotel outside Johannesburg.
"The armed robbery of three foreign journalists sent to cover the World Cup on Tuesday night - near the Portuguese team's base camp in Magaliesburg, north of Johannesburg - underlines what many South Africans consider to be their country's greatest challenge for the World Cup games," reports CSM.
Johan Burger of the Institute for Security Studies and from the South African Police Service, to help reduce risk has offered the following tips to the vast majority of the estimated 325,000 visitors coming to attend the World Cup games.
1.Don't advertise that you are a stranger in town. Criminals look for those who may seem fearful or unfamiliar with an area, or who may not know to take certain precautions, such as putting your wallet in your front pocket, rather than in the back pocket. Try to get directions from people you can trust, such as hotel staff, police officers, or store personnel. If someone is pestering you, politely refuse to take their help, and keep moving toward your destination or to a place of safety.
2.Hide the bling. You may have beautiful taste in watches or jewelry, but South Africans know to wear costume jewelry, if they wear any at all. Keep most of your valuables (including passport, cameras, etc.), locked away either in a hotel safe or locked in your bags at the hotel room. If you are withdrawing money from a bank, stand close to the automatic teller machine to obscure the view of others on how much you are taking out.
3. Travel in groups. There are areas that are safer than others in South Africa, as in any major city of the world. But you can still pay visits to historic monuments in South Africa - many of which are in older, urban areas - or to poorer townships such as Soweto and Alexandra, if you travel in a group organized by a tour operator recommended by your hotel.
4. Listen to locals. Ask the concierge or manager of your hotel or guesthouse for recommendations of what to see and when it is safe to travel. Many restaurants and nightclubs are clustered in areas that are generally safe, but it is always good to take the advice of local people on where to visit and when it is safest to return home. . Stay alert for carjackers. In most cases, it is the car that is the target and not the drivers or passengers. If you find yourself facing a gunman, simply get out of your car and hand over the keys without argument or delay. If you are being followed by someone who appears to be acting suspiciously, try to drive to the nearest police station, or to a public place like a shopping mall where there may be more protection and visibility.. Watch for "smash and grab" robberies. Try to keep valuables such as cellphones, purses, computer laptops, or other valuables out of sight, or better yet, locked away in the trunk of the car. Again, if you are the victim of a smash and grab, do not add to your risk by resisting the robber.
hree foreign journalists, who had gone to cover the World Cup, were robbed on Tuesday night near the Portuguese team's base camp north of Johannesburg.
Initial reports of the robbery of the journalists indicate that thieves broke into their rooms at the four-star Nutbush Boma Lodge near Magaliesburg at around 4 a.m., while the journalists were asleep.
The robbers held their victims at gunpoint, and stole cameras, passports, and cash. (ANI)