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How to stay safe while using e-hailing services and public transport

E-hailing services are convenient, reliable, comfortable and cost-effective. But, they are also controversial, with ongoing violence levelled at the popular services that enable users to make use of mobile apps to order taxis.

Because these e-hailing services provide an alternative to the more traditional metered taxi and public transport services, there are unfortunately times when unsafe situations can arise. Make sure you know how to stay safe when using these services:

  • Plan ahead. Before you request a ride, think about where you’re headed and review the safety features in the e-hailing service’s app so you know how to use them. 
  • Request your ride in safe area. Avoid spending unnecessary time outside alone with your phone in your hand. Instead, wait indoors until the app shows your driver has arrived.
  • Get in the right car. Before you get in the car, check that license plate, driver photo, and driver name all match what’s listed in the app.
  • Be a backseat rider. If you’re riding alone, sit in the backseat. This ensures you can safely exit on either side of the vehicle to avoid moving traffic.
  • Buckle up. Seatbelt use is the most effective way to save lives and reduce injuries related to car accidents.
  • Share your trip details with a friend. While en route, share your status and location with a friend or family member. They can track your trip and see your ETA.
  • Protect your personal information. There’s no need to share your phone number or other contact information with your driver.
  • Follow your intuition. Trust your instincts and use your best judgement when using e-hailing services.

Download and use Namola. If you ever feel you’re in an emergency situation, request help through the Free Namola safety app.

Source: Adapted from https://www.uber.com/info/rider-safety-tips/

Link to published post: https://namola.com/latest-news/another-satisfied-user/

Taxi Caught in Shootout

True to its mission of connecting citizens to safety in emergency situations, Namola successfully helped Lucia through a recent traumatic event, “Their response was very quick and the Namola team was really amazing.”

The Namola Response Centre received a request for help when Lucia was shot at while using an e-hailing service, allegedly by armed robbers.

Using the phone’s GPS coordinates, Namola was able to speedily report the incident to the nearest SAPS officials who were able quickly get to the scene of the incident.

Vision Tactical – a Namola Watch responder in the area – was also able to get to Lucia quickly by using the Namola provided coordinates. Vision Tactical safely helped Lucia get to the closest police station where she was able to report the incident to the authorities.

Lucia is another satisfied Namola user, who was able to safely get help in an emergency: “Being a victim of crime is a horrific experience, but Namola made the most traumatic experience of my life bearable.”  

There were no injuries or casualties, and the case is pending investigation.

E-hailing services are convenient, reliable, comfortable and cost-effective. But, they are also controversial, with ongoing violence levelled at the popular services that enable users to make use of mobile apps to order taxis.

Because these e-hailing services provide an alternative to the more traditional metered taxi and public transport services, there are unfortunately times when unsafe situations can arise.

Make sure you know how to stay safe when using these services. Click here for more info

Invest in good CCTV cameras to help curb crime

Millions of closed-circuit television (CCTV) cameras are installed in streets and businesses throughout the world with the stated goal of reducing crime and increasing public safety.

As Namola we would like to urge government, business and property owners to invest in CCTV technology to help curb crime.

This comes up after recent videos of criminals going viral online including cellphone footage that has been used by the members of the South African Police Services to identify criminals.

The surveillance footage is always a crucial piece of evidence during a police investigation. Surveillance cameras have, and will prevent many crimes.

Having cameras in public places also makes citizens feel safe. People feel safer in the knowledge that a potential mugger or attacker will be put-off by the presence of a camera.

Cameras, through video analytics, now have the ability to zoom in to reveal someone’s identity which can be beneficial to crime prevention when used in the correct way.

However not all CCTV footage has been able to be used to solve crime, lighting on most footages has been bad with grainy images that do not help police officers or citizens identify the perpetrators. hence we are appealing to government, business and property owners to install good CCTV camera to help reduce the increased crime rates in South Africa

For home owners, read #Namola’s article on how to turn an old cellphone into a top notch security camera for less money. Life Hack: Turn your smartphone into a security camera

UPDATE ON MISSING OMAR CARRIM (76)

Gauteng Community Safety MEC, Sizakele Nkosi-Malobane and Tshwane West Police Cluster Commander, Maj-Gen Daniel Mtombeni met the family of missing businessman Omar Carrim today.

The MEC assured the family that everything was being done and that national police had taken over the probe. They will be working with local and provincial SAPS.

The MEC confirmed they suspected Carrim was kidnapped.

Anti-crime activist Yusuf Abramjee said no ransom demands have been received.

He appealed to anyone with information to come forward.

Tip offs can be made by calling Crime Stop on 08600
10111.

Carrim’s son Abdullah also appealed for help and said anyone with information must please come forward urgently.

“My dad is on chronic medication and he needs it. He recently had a heart bypass operation also. I can confirm I received a call from my father yesterday,” he told the media.

When asked what else his missing father said, Abramjee interjected: “We are not going to give a blow to blow account. This is a sensitive matter and let’s give the police time and space to probe it.”

Nkosi-Malobane said police were working around the clock.

The Carrim family has thanked police for working on the case and for the thorough investigations. We are grateful,” she added.

They stressed no reward was on offer because it was a matter for police to decide.

Abramjee said the public must not expect a blow by blow account of progress.

“Law enforcement agencies will update us if and when necessary. Let’s also stop the social media messages, some of which are fake.”

#Namola Safety App

#Namola Safety App

UPDATE

Over 13 000 downloads now making it one of the fastest growing FREE apps in SA.

It’s also trending in the App Store and amongst the top apps.

Since the Gauteng launch last Thursday, we have seen a substantial increase in downloads: almost 3000 in the past three days.

Namola was launched by the Gauteng Community Safety Dept and Gauteng Traffic last week and entire Gauteng is now GPS location function.

Call back time: 90 seconds maximum. The majority have been tests.