The City of Cape Town’s Traffic Service impounded 80 vehicles during a public transport blitz in Bellville, Belhar and Brackenfell last week.
The operation coincided with week three of a similar operation in the southern peninsula that has seen 139 vehicle impoundments, 68 arrests and more than 9 000 fines issued.
One of the suspects arrested caused mayhem on 5 July 2017. Just after 08:00, officers pulled over a taxi in 5th Avenue, Grassy Park. The driver admitted to not having a driving licence. Once all of the passengers alighted from the vehicle, the driver sped off and led officers on a chase through Grassy Park and back towards Lavender Hill where he collided with three vehicles at the intersection of Prince George Drive and Joe Marks Boulevard. He eventually had a burst tyre and fled on foot. Officers continued the search until they found him hiding at a nearby property in Lavender Hill. He was arrested for reckless and negligent driving, resisting arrest, and fleeing the scene of an accident.
‘This incident is yet another example that running from the law causes more problems. What would have been an arrest for operating without a permit escalated into a much more serious charge sheet, all because he failed to cooperate,’ said the City’s Mayoral Committee Member for Safety and Security; and Social Services, Alderman JP Smith.
The unlicensed taxi driver also had his vehicle impounded. Currently, there are 354 public transport vehicles in the City’s Maitland pound: 227 minibuses, 5 midibuses, 4 buses, and 118 sedans.
The City’s Ghost Squad meanwhile held numerous operations focusing on drunk driving and illegal drag-racing in Plumstead, Bellville South and Milnerton. They arrested 11 motorists for reckless and negligent driving, one for excessive speed, and 16 for driving while intoxicated. Officers also issued 3 034 fines.
‘There was a big drag-racing event at Killarney on Saturday, 8 July 2017. We were reasonably satisfied with the behaviour of all concerned during and after the event. While the City encourages motorsport enthusiasts to enjoy their pastime in a safe and controlled environment, City traffic officers are still obligated to act against anyone found to be in contravention of the National Road Traffic Act. Officers deployed for the Killarney event stopped and took action against the drivers of 20 illegally modified vehicles, of which 16 failed to display registration plates. We also want to remind motorists that vehicles modified for racing are not allowed on public roads and should be transported via trailer or flatbed truck to events,’ added Alderman Smith.
Elsewhere, Cape Town Traffic Services arrested 10 motorists for driving while intoxicated and 14 for outstanding warrants. They served 67 warrants and released 25 others on a warning.
The Metro Police Department arrested 26 suspects in the last week – 12 for drunk driving, nine for possession of drugs, three for robbery, one for failing to comply with a lawful instruction, and one for possession of an illegal firearm and ammunition.
On Friday 7 July 2017, officers attached to the Gang and Drug Task Team were on patrol in Hanover Park when they saw a man acting suspiciously and trying to hide something. Officers searched him and found a .357 Magnum Taurus revolver and six .38 special cartridges in his possession. The 24-year-old suspect, who was found to be affiliated to a local gang, was detained at the Philippi police station.
On Saturday 8 July 2017, members of the Law Enforcement Stabilisation Unit were driving along Vanguard Drive when they saw a vehicle disregarding a red traffic light and moving into oncoming traffic. Officers also spotted two men going after the vehicle. They jumped out and approached the car and the driver then indicated that the men had tried to hijack her. Officers gave chase, but lost the suspects as they disappeared into the nearby informal settlement. Officers returned to the motorist and escorted her to her destination.