Police warn about spikes on roads

Police and traffic police in North West and Gauteng have issued a warning to motorists about the increasing incidents of spiking on public roads. Spiking involves putting spikes on roads to puncture tyres, forcing motorists to stop. Once they get out of their vehicles, they are robbed.

An example of spikes used on public roads. (Photo: Tshwane Metro Police Department)

“The Gauteng Traffic Police would like to warn motorists against criminals placing spikes or objects on public roads with the intention of robbing them. The Gauteng Traffic Police have in recent times noted a rise in incidents of spikes placed strategically on the freeways by criminals,” they said in a statement.

The police said hard objects, such as rocks, are also being thrown from overhead bridges resulting in motorists losing control of their vehicles, and then being robbed of their belongings.

The following routes have been identified as hotspots for spiking:
• The N4 to Rustenburg between R80 Mabopane Freeway and Brits plaza tollgate.
• The N4 in Pretoria between Solomon Mahlangu and Watermeyer Offramp.
• The N4 between Bronkhorstspruit and Balmoral offramp.
•The N1 Polokwane N4 interchange in Pretoria.
• Golden Highway.
• R21 Freeway from OR Tambo International Airport to Pretoria.

The police said these criminals move from one area to another where the roads are quiet. In many cases they are armed.

The following safety tips are to be followed as a precaution when a vehicle has been spiked.
• Never stop your vehicle if you have a puncture after driving over spikes. Instead, drive slowly to the nearest fuel station while contacting police or traffic police.
• If you are stopped by a traffic officer, demand to see their appointment certificate to verify if such an officer is employed by the relevant traffic authority.
• If the officer fails to produce his or her appointment certificate, take down the registration number of the patrol vehicle and report them immediately to the nearest police station.
• If your vehicle has a complete breakdown on the road, remain in the vehicle with your doors locked while seeking assistance.
• Do not allow any person to tow your vehicle without written permission.

“The placing of spikes has resulted in many accidents, and in some cases motorists have lost their lives as a result of these ruthless acts. The Gauteng Traffic Police will continue to conduct law enforcement operations on Gauteng major routes and freeways to ensure that anyone found placing an object is apprehended to face the full might of the law,” said Sello Maremane, Gauteng Traffic Police Spokesperson.

Motorists are urged to be vigilant and report any suspicious movements on freeways to 011 689 3712 or 011 689 3999, or alternatively, they can contact the police at 0800 10111.