What to do in a mall robbery

2018-11-21 06:01

AS we approach the busy festive season, the risk of mall robberies unfortunately increases. Knowing what to do in the event of a mall robbery could save your life.

This is the view of Malcolm Stephens, Fidelity Security Group Executive New Business Development. “The golden rule if you ever are caught in the middle of a heist is to stay calm,” said Stephens.

Customers need to remain vigilant at all times and should always be on the lookout for any suspicious activities and be aware of the people around them.


If you are in the store that is being robbed:

· co-operate with the robbers for your own safety. Listen to their instructions closely and follow their instructions;

· try to keep as calm as possible. Everyone reacts in a different way but try to breathe deeply until help arrives;

· do not use your cellphone while the robbery is in process as this could agitate the assailants;

· immediately try to find a sheltered spot and keep low on the ground;

· take note of the assailants so that you can pass information on to the authorities, ie. what they are wearing, distinctive clothes, markings, jewellery, etc. Try to remember what they look like i.e. height, weight, etc.;

· ensure your children are kept close to you at all times. Do not let children wander off while you are shopping; and

· do not shop with large amounts of cash or valuables.

If you are not in the store being robbed:

· speak to the store personnel to close the roller shutter doors of the shop you are in. This is standard operating procedures in many malls and move to the back of the store, out of sight;

· try to find a store closest to you and secure yourself as described above; and

· do not try to exit via the standard entry and exit points as these are the same points the robbers will be using. Many malls now have standard operating procedures to lock down the mall.

Stephens says crime is becoming more sophisticated, with inside information playing an increasingly prominent role.

“Whether you were in the store being robbed or just witnessed the incident in the centre, you should seek counselling, regardless of how you might feel.

“It often takes some time to experience and deal with the post-traumatic stress following such robberies,” said Stephens.

— Supplied.


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