Between lockdown restrictions and civil unrest, travelling safely can be challenging. Mandy Latimore provides tips for remaining safe on the road
The civil unrest in June and August, as well as travel restrictions, has made me reconsider the safety measures that we need to put in place to travel safely during these uncertain times.
If you need to travel, even locally for work, leisure or emergencies, you need to plan your trips in advance to avoid civil unrest hot spots. Many innocent people have been caught up in these incidents by being in the wrong place at the wrong time.
Here are some tips to assist all travellers to avoid unnecessary stress and danger:
- Keep up-to-date with local news stations for the areas that are affected.
- Have a “Plan B” in place so that you can get to your destination via another route.
- Inform a relative or co-worker which route you are taking and the alternate route you may have to take. If possible, travel with someone who will be able to assist with looking at maps while you are driving.
- If you have a security or insurance company that offer motorists assistance, let them know that you are travelling and the routes that you may be taking. They may be able to advise if these routes are safe or not.
- Look into downloading armed response apps like that of the AA.
- Be aware of your surroundings at all times. Look ahead!
- Never travel into the area if you see large crowds. Just turn around. Never engage with rioters.
With regards to the COVID-19 national lockdown regulations (in July 2021), the latest inter- provincial restrictions prohibits leisure travel into or out of Gauteng. However, the following travel is still permitted:
- Travel for work purposes is permitted provided that you have a permit from your employer, which has to corresponds with Form 7 of Annexure A.
- Travel to attend a funeral, which requires a permit that corresponds with Form 4 of Annexure A. These can be obtained at your nearest police station or magistrate’s office.
- To transit through the province.
- Travel to institutes of learning for students.
- Travel when relocating to a new residence.
- Travel to care for an immediate family member providing that the person has an affidavit which corresponds with Form 6 of Annexure A.
- Travel to your residence from a quarantine or isolation facility.
- Travel to obtain medical treatment.
The best option is to just stay at home if you can. But, if you do have to travel, then … plan ahead, be vigilant and take precautions. Ensure that you have the necessary permits and authorisations.
Check that you have sufficient fuel and that your vehicle is in good repair to avoid any possible breakdowns. Keep your phone charged and have your insurance or medical assistance contact number programmed into your phone. Stay safe and travel safely!
The lockdown restrictions and COVID-19 regulations are continuously changing. We encourage the Rolling Inspiration readers to keep updated through officially sources.
Avoid information and news shared on social media or Whatsapp messages by friends and family. Instead, seek out official, reliable news sources. Follow research organisations, such as the World Health Organization, or government resources. Visit the official South African website for COVID-19 updates at https://sacoronavirus.co.za.
For enquiries, phone the government COVID-19 Public Hotline on 0800 029 999 or send “HI” to the Whatsapp Help Service on 0600 123 456.
Be sure to fact check the information that is circulated and be wary of possible fake news. If the information hasn’t been circulated through an official source, avoid passing it along to friends and family.
Mandy Latimore is a consultant in the disability sector in the fields of travel and access. email: email@example.com