From client Keith N. Daniels on 16 February 2012:
I am TRULY over the sun(moon) with being overwhelmed. I had my Toyota Avanza at your centre for the six month resealed by the Maitland Branch on the 7th Feb 2012 . By the weekend I wiped the dust off from my vehicle and noticed marks on the roof, I then came back to the branch on the 13th Feb and spoke to Mr Paul. I was blown out of my socks as this man embraced my complaint with so much concern. We then proceeded to my vehicle to inspect, what I was unhappy about and immediately he then summoned the team and pointed to them, with authority but absolute respect informing them that this vehicle will be in for a reseal , due to the fact of the work not being of a good standard.
I need to bring to your attention it made feel good, that I was not seen as a nag, but Paul was after perfection and client satisfaction. Me referring to the Manager as Paul is only because he introduced himself that way, Thank you to Mr Paul and team for redoing my vehicle on 16th Feb GREAT job.
SMASH & GRAB REPORTS:
From client Mr. Mqatazana on 26 May 2012:
On Saturday, 26th May 2012 at about 20h00pm I was driving down Vanguard Drive just before the foot bridge, I heard a bang and saw an unknown guy hit my left passenger window with an unknown object. My left window is cracked and did not fail because i put Smash & Grab film on.
Van Anoniem op 27 Augustus 2012
Ek het ‘n jeugdige swart man met ‘n hoodie-top opgemerk wat my motor nader aan die linkerkant. Ek het gesien dat die man sy regterhand oplig en met iets slaan teen die linkerkantse voorste venster. Die ding wat hy in sy hand vas het, en hy het 5 tot 6 keer daarmee geslaan.Die venster het uiteindelik gekraak en toe gebreek.Die onbekende persoon het sy hand in die venster ingesteek , maar ek het reeds my handsak gegryp en agtertoe geplaas. Die persoon het toe weggehardloop met niks.
2011 SMASH & GRAB REPORTS:
Client, Mandy Doncastor was involved in a Smash & Grab Date: 09 / 05 / 2011
I was parked in Observatory waiting for someone while i was on the phone and someone attempted to break my passenger side window where my bag was situated. The window shattered inside the film and he couldn’t break it and ran off when he realised I was in the car.
Case Nr: CAS 187/ 5 /2011
Police Station: 93 Victoria Road, Woodstock
Client, Ms. Susan Leroy reported a smash & grab incident on Date: 01/03/2011
This is to certify that on Tuesday 2011/03/01 at about 10h30 i opened a case docket of attempted smash &grab at Randburg SAPS with MAS / CAS 9/03/2011
As a result of an incident which was reported my vehicle a silvery bronze Land Rover Discovery 4,the driver’s window was shattered but still stayed intact.
Preventing a Smash and Grab attack!
According to insurer’s and glass fitter’s statistics, smash-and-grabs are on the increase with women most at risk.
Most women close the windows when they’re at a traffic light, yet leaving them open only a slight 3 cm can make them more flexible and more impervious to shattering. The window thus absorbs most of the impact by being less rigid while not leaving enough room for the criminal to stick his hand through.
Do not leave any valuables in the front seat with you, or in the back. Handbags should be kept in the boot or at the very least out of sight under the seat. Most insurers will not insure All Risk or portable items if they are in plain view.
Remain alert when coming to an intersection or stopping your vehicle, no matter what time of day. It’s also wise to leave a gap or stopping distance between you and the car in front of you to give you room to get out, should anything happen. If its late at night, slow down long enough in advance so that the light changes green by the time you get to it.
Fit your window with a polycarb film such as Auto Armor Safety Film. These are tinted so that no one can see into the car, while also preventing the windows from shattering. While the glass breaks, the film holds the pieces in place, which further protects you from broken glass.Also remember to remain calm in the event of a smash-and-grab. Do not become aggressive to the culprit or struggle for your possessions. Letting the criminal take your handbag or cell phone could save your life.
More Success Stories:
After a smash and grab, Nancy at Auto Armour in Cape Town handled my claim, arranging replacement of film, and refund in an exceptionally professional manner. Also well done to Lee Anne at the Bedford View Branch for ‘fitting’ me in to get the film replaced on the day and time that suited me. and to the staff at the Bedford View Branch for completing the fitment in record time and even reversing my car out for me into the car park. All round excellent service.
Thank you Auto Armor for an excellent product!
On Friday night around 9:30pm three men tried to hijack me at gunpoint. Thanks to the windows being protected with safety film they could not smash the window and I managed to escape. I am grateful that my car was protected with the film and will definitely advocate the product to friends and family.
To everyone at Auto Armor no matter what you do please continue as you are making a difference.
I wish you all the best
■ Keep all windows closed or, at most, not open more than would allow a hand to fit through. It’s always safer to have an anti Smash and Grab Safety film or window tinting fitted to your car such as Auto Armor.
■ Leave enough room between your car and the one in front to avoid being boxed in. Make sure you can see where the tyres of the other car make contact with the road.
■ Remain in your car if it is hit from behind. Inspect any damage only once you are sure it is not a hijack attempt.
■ Smash & Grab window tinting can also be a hinderance, as perpetrators cannot always see inside your car.
■ Be aware of anybody who approaches your car or is loitering near traffic lights, stop streets, parking areas or your driveway as they can attempt to smash and grab or hijack you.
■ Constantly monitor what vehicles are travelling behind, ahead and next to you. More than one vehicle could be involved and they could be setting a trap to stop you. If you are suspicious of vehicles around you take (responsible) action to get out of the situation. Did you know that you can have Auto Armor Smash and Grab window tinting put on your car while you are having a Tracker installed.
■ If you suspect that you are being followed, you should ideally drive to the nearest police station. If this is not possible, drive to another safe place but don’t go home.
■ If approached by a smash and grab artist, a suspicious looking person, especially at night or in lonely areas, drive off quickly from a stop street or intersection, always heeding traffic danger, skipping a stop sign or red light remains an offence and the onus is on you to prove that your action was in self-defence.
■ At unusual or unexpected roadblocks, keep windows closed and doors locked and ask for the police or traffic officer’s identity card. Show your identity document to them through the window. Trust works both ways. The same goes for being stopped by traffic officers at speed traps. Clients with Auto Armor smash and grab window tinting are less likely to be hijacked as it is a deterrent.
■ On long journeys only stop overnight at safe places. Parking next to the road or in a parking area overnight is not safe.
■ Report any suspicious looking strangers and vehicles to the police. Give a description of the occupants and their vehicle.
■ Don’t stop at the scene of an accident unless you are convinced it is genuine. Accidents can be set up in the hope that you will stop to assist. Sometimes a “body” is placed next to the road. Rather drive on and report the incident at the nearest police station. Slowing down too much may also make you vulnerable.
■ Never Leave valuable items on your seat or anywhere that is visible to a possible criminal. If you have not got Auto Armor smash & grab window tinting, then it is possible that you could be involved in a smash and grab attack.
■ Don’t stop if, for example, a passer-by indicates that your car has a flat tyre or other defect. Drive to the nearest service station or safe area and check it there. It is a good idea to carry a product that temporarily seals any puncture and inflates the tyre.
■ Don’t pick up hitch-hikers or unknown passengers.
■ Don’t leave your car door open and the engine running while opening your garage door or gates – criminals can act quicker than you’d expect.
■ Keep your windows open and air-con on when needed. Auto Armor Smash and grab window tinting has a 99% UV black as well as strenght and protection.
Surviving a hijacking:
■ Regardless of the sort of crime and the criminal’s intentions, the situation is an explosive one in which you both have one thing in mind: survival.
■ Hijacking involves planning and the criminals are likely to have more experience in such situations, thus more control over you and themselves.
■ A hijacking is usually over in a matter of seconds or minutes but it is one of the most frightening experiences one can go through. Try your utmost to stay calm. Listen to the hijackers and do as they tell you and you have a greater chance of surviving.
During a hijacking:
■ Here are some tips on getting through the ordeal alive:
■ Your life and those with you must be your priority. Resisting the hijackers may cause then to become violent or even deadly. Remember: possessions can be replaced, a life cannot.
■ The hijackers are probably just as scared and nervous as you are. They may even be under the influence of drugs or alcohol which may make their actions even more unpredictable.
■ Try not to panic and do anything the hijackers may not be expecting. Do not scream or make sudden movements, such as motioning with your hands.
■ Avoid eye contact with them,
■ Keep your hands where the hijackers can see them, ideally at chest level. This will assure them that you are not reaching for a weapon. Do not raise your hands above your head as they may think you are attracting attention of other people.
■ If they order you out of the car wait for them to open the door or, if they order you to, do it slowly with one hand, keeping the other where they can see it, Also undo your seatbelt with one hand, preferably the hand furthest from the clip by extending your arm over your body (if it is on your left, use your right hand).
■ Slowly move away from the car so that you cannot be perceived as a threat to them.
■ Listen carefully to and make sure you understand what the hijackers are saying and follow their orders.
■ Quietly but clearly assure the hijackers that they can take the car.
■ Do not reach for or motion towards items they may demand such as wallets, briefcases and cell phones. Rather tell them where they are and wait for them to get them themselves or they may tell you to hand them over.
■ Be honest with hijackers. For example, if you have a firearm on you and they ask, tell them you have. Finding out or suspecting you have lied to them may unsettle them and lead to them becoming violent. Tell them honestly how to deactivate any alarms or immobilisers or do it yourself as ordered.
■ Try and concentrate on the possibility of later identifying the hijackers. Make mental notes of how many there are, what they are wearing, their ages, and any facial or other physical characteristics. However, do not stare at the hijackers; try not to be obvious. To them this means that you will later be able to identify them and be evidence against them and they could become violent or be less hesitant to leave soon.
■ Hijackers may not notice a sleeping baby in the back seat. If this is the case, tell them and point out that the child is not a threat and will make things more difficult for them. Never move to release the child without them saying you may. Do the same if a pet is in the car but do not push the point to where your life may be threatened at the expense of an animal.
■ If ordered to lie down, do so and remain there with your head down, do so and remain there with your head down. Do not watch them. Stay still until you are sure they have left and only then go for help.
■ The hijackers may drive off with you or you may even be ordered to drive. If you are driving, do so responsibly and do not do anything out of the ordinary. Always remain quiet unless you need to reply to a question or clarify an order. Remember to be honest with them.
■ Once you have been released make sure that you are out of harm’s reach before moving to get help.
After a hijacking:
Get help as soon as the hijackers have left you and immediately report it to the police. The Police have a greater chance of catching the criminals while they are on the move in your car.You experience severe trauma by a hijacking, trauma that can manifest itself in many different ways soon or long after the incident. You need to get professional counselling to help you process what happened and cope with it emotionally. Seek help within hours of the hijacking. Do not fool yourself into thinking you’ll “get over it”.
Remember that you are not to blame for anything that happened. Criminals look for new opportunities and situations that make their potential victims vulnerable, and develop new techniques to get our vehicles.