The latest crime statistics from the South African Police Service shows that cases of hijacking increased significantly in the past year.

According to the SAPS, there were over 14,600 reported car hijackings between 2015 and 2016, up 14.3% from 12,770 cases in the prior period.

Statistically, this shows that 40 cars are hijacked every day in South Africa (35 in 2015), or roughly one car every 36 minutes.

As has always been the case, car and truck hijacking is most common in South Africa’s most populated province, Gauteng, followed by other built up provinces such as KwaZulu Natal and the Western Cape.

Gauteng accounts for over half (50.5%) of all reported car hijackings – with 7,376 cases, and 58.% of all reported truck hijackings, with 695 cases.

The province is also the worst when it comes to theft of cars and motorcycles – referring to cases where cars have been stolen while unoccupied – with 26,646 cases.

Vehicle theft is far more common than hijacking, with the SAPS reporting 53,809 cases in 2016.

These are the worst precincts in South Africa for car hijacking, truck hijacking, and vehicle theft in 2016.

The precincts represent the SAPS office where the crime was reported and a case opened, not necessarily where the crime took place – however it is indicative of the trouble area.

Car hijacking

While Gauteng has the worst rate of hijacking in the country, Nyanga in the Western Cape has emerged as the worst precinct in the country, overtaking Booysens which held the top dishonour in 2016.

New entries into the ‘worst 10’ include Soshanguve, Yeoville and Kagiso in Gauteng, and Kwazakele in the Eastern Cape. The 10 worst precincts account for 12% of total carjacking cases.

# Precinct Province No. of crimes
1 Nyanga Western Cape 238
2 Booysens Gauteng 207
3 Gugulethu Western Cape 202
4 Jeppe Gauteng 192
5 Chatsworth KwaZulu Natal 175
6 Soshanguve Gauteng 169
7 Pinetown KwaZulu Natal 146
8 Yeoville Gauteng 139
8 Kagiso Gauteng 139
10 Kwazakele Eastern Cape 135

Truck hijacking

Heidelberg in Gauteng remained the worst precinct for truck hijackings, though the number of cases is down from 2015.

New entries into the ‘worst 10’ include Vosloorus, Bedfordview, Ogies, Boksburg North and Grootvlei.  46% of all truck hijackings in the country take place in these 10 precincts.

# Precinct Province No. of crimes
1 Heidelberg Gauteng 73
2 Kempton Park Gauteng 41
3 Vosloorus Gauteng 32
4 Ogies Mpumalanga 31
5 Bedfordview Gauteng 28
6 Delmas Mpumalanga 27
7 Alberton Gauteng 26
8 Olifantsfontein Gauteng 21
9 Boksburg North Gauteng 20
9 Grootvlei Mpumalanga 20

Vehicle theft

Honeydew has maintained its place as the worst area for vehicle theft in the country, with Berea in KZN moving up to second place.

New areas in the 2016 ‘worst 10’ include Linden, Boksburg North, Krugersdorp and Brixton. The 10 worst precincts account for 11.1% of all vehicle theft crimes.

# Precinct Province No. of crimes
1 Honeydew Gauteng 835
2 Berea KwaZulu Natal 729
3 Durban Central KwaZulu Natal 618
4 Booysens Gauteng 574
4 Roodepoort Gauteng 574
6 Linden Gauteng 554
7 Brooklyn Gauteng 529
8 Boksburg North Gauteng 521
8 Krugersdorp Gauteng 521
10 Brixton Gauteng 515

SAPS data for 2016 covers April 2015 to March 2016 – and because of this, it is at least 6 months out of date by the time of public release.

The group has announced that it will, in the future, put crime data out on a quarterly basis to give a better overview of crime trends in the country.

The stats should also be taken in context of population sizes – ie, as the most populous province, Gauteng is more likely to have the most incidences of crime.

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