Motorists have been warned that with the price of fuel ever so high, it has now become a precious commodity and dodgy characters will use every chance they get to steal someone else’s petrol, says Wahl Bartmann, the chief executive officer of the Fidelity Services Group.
According to Bartmann as the price of fuel keeps on increasing, there have been several incidents across South Africa in recent weeks involving attempts to steal fuel by drilling into a petrol tank or siphoning it out of the tank.
However, motorists can change their behaviour and reduce their chances of falling victim to these criminals’ acts, Bartmann said.
“If you are fortunate enough to have access to your own off-street or secure parking, you should always make use of it and the protection it offers. Putting your car out of sight or behind a locked door can make it less attractive to any would-be fuel thief,” Bartmann said.
He added that motorists must have necessary sensors that will detect and sound the alarm when there’s unauthorised movements in the garage or at the garage. In cases where they park on the street, they need to ensure they park close to arears where there is street lighting and regular foot traffic, said Bartmann.
“If you use the street, we suggest you try and park as close to your home as possible. You can also park in such a way that your fuel cap is pointed into the street and not hidden from view. We also advise against leaving your car standing in one spot for an extended period.”
Bartmann said motorists should not leave any good in their cars and should speak to their armed response company to see what other protective measures they can take.
“If you see anyone loitering around parked cars in your street, please alert your security company or the police. We can make an enormous difference to the crime situation in South Africa by paying attention to what happens around us and speaking up when seem out of place,” Bartmann said.