Blog: Dave LeggettBMW South Africa's carjack tips

Dave Leggett | 13 October 2003

Okay, the big picture is that South Africa is a pretty amazing place. The country faces big challenges but has also made some great progress since apartheid ended (much more than many would have expected). But it is a place where economic development is - inevitably - still very unbalanced and where crime is high. One crime that seems to symbolise the idea of the have-nots forcibly grabbing from the haves is carjacking. Nasty business and especially common in Jo'burg apparently. I remember reading a few years ago about special flame throwers being fitted to BMWs. When activated, the system would ensure that the prospective carjacker would get a blast of flame to the hands following contact with the door handle. No worries about accidental operation or potential litigation problems in SA. But I read in this week's Economist that the firm that produced this unusual aftermarket item has gone under. What now? BMW's current advice to carjack victims: 'Open your palms and hold your arms up in front of your chest. It shows submission - and the bones in your forearms might deflect a bullet.' BMW also recommends fitting a luminous emergency release handle in the boot (trunk) in case robbers lock you in it. Top tips.

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