• Servamus interviewed a few former police members to find out about their “lives after the police” and a community member who joins the fight against crime – especially environmental crime. Read their stories from pp 20-26 in Servamus: November 2017.

    Servamus interviewed a few former police members to find out about their “lives after the police” and a community member who joins the fight against crime – especially environmental crime. Read their stories from pp 20-26 in Servamus: November 2017.

  • With the latest crime statistics being released at the end of October, it sketches a less positive picture. We look at alternative ways in which citizens choose to protect themselves. Read the article from pp 14-19 in Servamus: November 2017.

    With the latest crime statistics being released at the end of October, it sketches a less positive picture. We look at alternative ways in which citizens choose to protect themselves. Read the article from pp 14-19 in Servamus: November 2017.

  • It is always a privilege to participate in awards ceremonies where excellent police work is recognised. Thanks to Trackers individual police members and units have been awarded for their fight against vehicle crime for the 18th time! Read the article from pp 46-49 in Servamus: November 2017.

    It is always a privilege to participate in awards ceremonies where excellent police work is recognised. Thanks to Trackers individual police members and units have been awarded for their fight against vehicle crime for the 18th time! Read the article from pp 46-49 in Servamus: November 2017.

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Article by Kotie Geldenhuys
Photos provided by Rescue SA

On 11 March 2011 at 14:46, an 8.9-magnitude earthquake, so powerful that it shifted the earth on its axis by 10 cm, struck Japan. Less than an hour later, the first of many tsunami waves hit Japan's coastline. These waves reached run-up heights (the distance that the wave surges inland above sea level) of up to 39 m at Miyako city and travelled inland as far as 10 km in Sendai. The tsunami flooded an estimated area of approximately 561 km2 in Japan. The electrical power and backup generators at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant were overwhelmed by the tsunami and the plant lost its cooling capabilities. This resulted in a level-7 nuclear meltdown and the release of radioactive materials into the Pacific Ocean (www.livescience.com/39110-japan-2011-earthquake-tsunami-facts.html). In 2017, six years after the earthquake and tsunami, the final death toll stood at 15 893, with 2553 people unaccounted for (www.asahi.com/ ajw/articles/AJ201703110042.html).

When natural disasters or man-made catastrophes topple buildings, search and rescue teams immediately set out to find victims trapped beneath the wreckage. During these missions, time is critical and the ability to quickly detect living victims greatly increases the chances of rescue and survival. In such a situation, the first thing to do is to activate search and rescue teams, which consist of highly trained volunteers. In South Africa there are a number of NGOs, such as the Red Cross and Gift of the Givers, which respond to disaster areas and do excellent work by helping the victims. Servamus spoke to Mr Ian Scher, CEO of Rescue South Africa, one of the NGOs that respond to disasters, to learn more about the work they do. Rescue South Africa sent a rescue team of 50 members on 15 March 2011 to assist in the response to the 2011 Japan earthquake, which was followed by a tsunami.

The beginning
Mr Scher told us that after a group of volunteers went to India and Turkey to assist with search and rescue operations following earthquakes, the concept of Rescue South Africa was born. In 2001, an NGO was registered and the big build-up started. The team needed to get specialised rescue equipment and other necessities such as mobile/veld kitchens and toilets together to make responding to disaster areas possible.

Rescue South Africa approached USAID to request funding for training. The funding was provided and two teams from OFDA (Office of Foreign Disaster Assistance) were sent to South Africa to train a selected group of professional firefighters. This was a part of their mission to assist vulnerable populations in training resources to build resilience and strengthen their own ability to respond to emergencies. Rescue South Africa strategically selected the delegates to ensure maximum impact of this training opportunity. A total of 26 firefighters, who were also involved in training in their daily jobs, were selected and trained. This group of 26 went on to train thousands of South Africans to the level of Urban Search and Rescue (USAR) technicians.

Training
Rescue South Africa's instructors and training material have been accredited by the University of Johannesburg (UJ) to ensure a tertiary institution benchmark. This benchmark not only ensures the international standard of Rescue South Africa's training solution - it also entrenches the standardisation of training required to ensure uniformity and team cohesion in the future. Career firefighters are accredited by UJ to do practical training with delegates. These instructors are also qualified safety officers.
The 15-week training course consists of theory and practical work and covers various rescue topics such as high angles, confined spaces, swift water, hazardous chemicals, industrial and agricultural rescue, trenches, structural collapse rescue, fire search and rescue and training the trainer. Students write a theoretical exam and also do a practical examination during which they are evaluated on their knowledge of using the equipment properly. As search and rescue is all about teamwork, they also do group tasks during which they have to build specific wooden structures (shoring), which are typical of those built when a rescue team deals with unsafe structures after a disaster, to ensure their safety.

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[This is only an extract of an article published on pp 22-27 in Servamus: October 2017. The rest of this very interesting article looks at the equipment used; what it takes to deploy a team after a rescue as well as the international acknowledgement this team has received for the work they do during disasters. Contact Servamus’s offices to request the rest of this interesting article by sending an e-mail to: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or by phoning (012) 345 4660/22.]

Servamus - November 2017

Police members who are passionate about making a difference warm my heart.
By Annalise Kempen
Almost 200 years ago, in 1829, the world's first police force was created by Sir Robert Peel.
By Annalise Kempen
In October 2000, a police official was seriously injured when he foiled a bank robbery in the Bedfordview centre near Johannesburg after two men robbed the Standard Bank of a large amount of cash.
By Annalise Kempen
During the first weekend of October 2017, there was a huge outcry on social media following the spreading of a video showing an incident at a supermarket in Gauteng where security officers assaulted a woman while her crying three-year-old toddler bore witness to her mother's ordeal.
By Annalise Kempen

Pollex - November 2017

Section 165 of the Criminal Procedure Act 51 of 1977 (“the CPA”) provides as follows:
Read More - S V Sebofi 2015 (2) SACR 179 (GJ)
Mr Sebofi (the accused) was convicted on two counts of rape by the regional court in Roodepoort (the trial court), and sentenced to life incarceration.
In the case of Jordaan and Others v City of Tshwane Metropolitan Municipality and Others [2017] ZACC 31 (CC), a full bench of 11 judges of our Constitutional Court unanimously declared that, on transfer of property, a new owner is NOT liable for debts (Afrikaans: "skuld") arising BEFORE transfer of the property under section 118(3) of the Local Government: Municipal Systems Act 32 of 2000.
Read More - Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP), Gauteng v MG 2017 (2) SACR 132 (SCA)
Background Section 57(1) of the Criminal Law (Sexual Offences and Related Matters) Amendment Act 32 of 2007 provides as follows:
In Servamus: June 2015 Pollex briefly referred to two Draft White Papers* that had appeared on 3 March 2015 and on which the public were asked to comment.

Letters - November 2017

Recently, former officers of the SAPS from Pietermaritzburg were invited by officers from Durban to meet at the Japanese Gardens, Durban North, to get to know each other.
Police members from Napier Police Station were busy with crime prevention duties in Sarel Cilliers Street in Napier when a white Nissan Tida, driving at a high speed, passed them around 23:00 on 11 October 2017.
After nearly two years of devotion to a case of aggravated robbery, a Westville SAPS detective secured 15 yearsentences for two accused in a Pinetown court during the end of September 2017.
November 2017 Magazine Cover

Servamus' Mission

Servamus is a community-based safety and security magazine for both members of the community as well as safety and security practitioners with the aim of increasing knowledge and sharing information, dedicated to improving their expertise, professionalism and service delivery standards. It promotes sound crime management practices, freedom of speech, education, training, information sharing and a networking platform.