There’s a R39 billion project getting underway to help tackle the issues raised by the crime stats for Durban (in particular, its beachfront) over the last year.
It really is a tale of two cities for KwaZulu-Natal’s biggest metropolis. The crime stats for Durban tell just as comprehensive a story as their beautiful beaches and lekker nightlife does, we’re afraid.
Make no mistake, Durban has all the elements to seriously challenge Cape Town and Johannesburg as one of the most elite cities in South Africa. However, the local police force is losing its war on crime – which is largely down to just how much criminal activity occurs on the beachfront.
DBN’s iconic coastline is both a beacon for international tourists and opportunists operating on the wrong side of the law. In fact, the UK government have even highlighted just how dangerous the beachfront is, by featuring it as one of its “crime hotspots” on their Foreign Office website.
Local authorities have begun their fightback, though. As revealed by Carte Blanche, an eye-watering R39 billion project is targeting the city’s worst offenders. Only time will tell if this huge spend will have been worth it, but here’s what crimefighters are currently up against:
Crime stats for Durban – Four alarming figures:
(All data has been taken from SAPS’ crime stats for Durban, during 2017/18.)
Durban Central is the main police station for crimes reported on the beachfront. This year, it made the top 10 list for the most occurrences of “common robbery” in the whole country.
Granted, it fares better than Johannesburg, Cape Town and Pretoria (the top three), but given that it only recorded sixteen fewer common robberies than Western Cape gang-hotspot Nyanga, it’s obvious that some serious action needs to be taken.
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Theft from motor vehicles
This will raise a few eyebrows: Durban Central has the second highest rate of car and motorbike theft in the entire country, rubbing shoulders with some of the most deprived areas of Mzansi. There were 643 recorded thefts from cars over the last financial year, a number only “bettered” by Brooklyn in Gauteng (793).
There is a common theme developing here. Durban has a significant problem with theft. “Non-residential robbery” refers to incidents of theft which occur in public, rather than homes or businesses.
Fuelled by pickpocketers and street crimes, DBN central comes second again on this list (197 incidents), with Johannesburg Central (205) just taking the top spot.
Damage to homes and living areas is a very popular modus operandi for the local criminal community. This category also involved home burglaries, so it’s not a good sign for locals – or visitors – to see Durban Central take seventh place on this list. There were 2 870 such incidents in the last year.
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