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Unread postPosted: Sat Jul 12, 2008 2:04 pm 
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A little listing of things which has happended in Holland the past week.
Police woman got shot by a driver out of the blue when she asked him to get out of the car.
2 people stabbed each other to death
3 policemen were assaulted by a group outside a bar.
And this list goes on...
And none in the big cities.
And you wont disagree that Holland is a safe country.
Nor would i.

So, beware of the news items :D
Its true, bad things do happen. But the percentage of it happening to you is very,very small.

btw, i was robben once. In Lanzarote, a holiday island in Spain

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Last edited by bert on Sat Jul 12, 2008 2:56 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Unread postPosted: Sat Jul 12, 2008 2:45 pm 
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To everyone that said all the good things :clap: :clap: :clap: . I can only agree with them. Yes we SAFFIES have a problem with crime in SA but we learned to work and survive around it.

I think the only time you will be robbed inside KNP is when the Baboons and the Vervets will steel your stuff!!!!! :twisted:

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Unread postPosted: Sat Jul 12, 2008 2:58 pm 
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Vervets stole my tabacco and sweets.
I accepted the sweets but chased the vervet till he dropped my tabacco.
Even i have my limits :twisted:

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 Post subject: Please visit.
Unread postPosted: Sat Jul 12, 2008 5:31 pm 
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Mucman wrote:
I think all in all one can say, that south africa is a dangerous country not only but also for south africans. But the Kruger Park ist a relatively save place to be.

One can go nuts. I'm at a loss what to do. But I think I will come and see............


I visited SA many times during 1983 - 1987, once in 2000 and 2006. I was aware when visiting in 2000 that the level of crime had risen dramatically since the 80's. I think it made me over cautious and slightly apprehensive. It didn't spoil my holiday, nothing happened. But I learned to have a level of awareness that ensured my safety. It didn't put me off going back in 2006 and when I asked my wife where she wanted to go for our big annual holiday....well, we'll be landing in JNB on the 12th Aug :)

Take care, don't be silly, don't put yourself at risk, be aware and take advice of the locals. You will enjoy your trip to SA. KNP for 8 nights for us :dance:


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Unread postPosted: Sat Jul 12, 2008 7:16 pm 
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Mucman. There is crime in our beautiful country . That is a fact of life. However, if you stay on the highways and stop only at designated stopping areas( usually petrol stations) you should be fine. Just keep your valuables out of sight in the car boot and be vigilant when you are stopped at a traffic light or stop street in town. If someone suspicious approaches you, put your hand on the hooter to attract attention to your predicament. Keep the car doors locked at all times. But don't let it spoil your holiday. You will have a wonderful time in Kruger and it is as safe there as in any country in the world :lol:

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Unread postPosted: Sun Jul 13, 2008 1:12 am 
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Munchman

Not a single person has been hijacked inside KNP. This person on this website has been shown to be very liberal with her interpretation of the facts.

What did happen, is that people who tried to use KNP as a route to get stolen vehicles in to Mozambique got caught inside KNP. The vehicles were not stolen inside KNP.

Regarding the police inside KNP. There have always been police inside KNP. There has been a police station in Skukuza for a very long time. What has happened is that the SA government transferred the responsibility for border control from the defence force to the police.

For many years there were big army bases inside the KNP. This was for the purpose of patrolling the border. Some of these have in fact been dismantled and some are now used by concession holders for tourism purposes. Others have been transferred to the police. The fact is actually that there are a lot less police in KNP than there used to be defence force members.

People have been moving through the KNP area from long before the park was established, have always been moving through and will continue moving through. Not even in the time of the heavy defence force presence could they stop it completely. These people are not know to be there for criminal purposes. They are mostly poor people from Mozambique, coming to look for jobs in SA.

Poaching is a constant problem. These poachers avoid contact with people, since discovery is their biggest threat.

I would go so far as to state that the KNP is one of the safest places in the entire SA. Yes, crime do happen there too. Where there are humans, there will be crime.

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 Post subject:
Unread postPosted: Sun Jul 13, 2008 11:50 am 
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To put it into perspective go and read the UK's Foreign Office advice on Crime in Spain, one of Europe's top tourist destinations.

Crime in Spain

Now I've been to Spain many times and I have had a brilliant time with nothing happening to spoil my holidays at all.

In every car park I go to in a tourist area in the UK I am warned about car thieves operating and not to leave anything on show. At least in South Africa they have car guards. If we believe all the media hype then we would never leave our houses.

And I'll say it again. The media have been reporting recent deaths from stabbings in the UK. They could be construed as the UK not being a safe place and everyone is at risk of being stabbed. This is blatantly not the case. They are incidents that happen in places that even as a resident I would not think of going to.

As ever be vigilant and aware of your surroundings whether you are walking or driving and you will minimise the risk.

On a final point I would really like to know the motivation of this so-called travel website. There is one thing to start a debate but another thing to post the scaremongering that this site is doing. The only thing I can thing of is that her advertisers and sponsors are the high-end lodges with fly-in fly-out facilities or from neighbouring countries who have a vested interest in stirring up trouble.

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Unread postPosted: Sun Jul 13, 2008 11:52 am 
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@ Mucman

I say this with absolute sincerity and concern: :(

Your trip is doomed from the start. It appears that you have become totally gripped by this subject to the extent that you will spend every minute of your time talking, thinking and worrying about the possibility of experiencing a form of crime while on holiday here. You have gone way beyond healthy caution and sensibility. I am sad to say that you will regret not allowing yourself to enjoy your time here.

Also, it seems from your closing comments that you hold the reports by this questionable individual in a very high regard. Why?? Why do you present her articles as if they are accurate? THEY ARE NOT! You seem to react as if WE are misinformed or are hiding the truth? You ask "why wasnt that information mentioned here?" --- Because it is NOT TRUE, IT DID NOT HAPPEN, IT IS A LIE! Ask the journalist when, where and to whom it happened...she cannot answer because it is just not so! I actually think that the article is so irresponsible and so riddled with sensationalism and lies, that SANParks should seriously consider taking legal action.

We are WELL AWARE of the reality of crime in SA...there are those who retreat into denial and convince themselves that it is normal, and there are those who blow it out of proportion and seem to delight in the misfortune of SA but I can assure you that you need not carry the burden of enlightening us and informing us of the facts on the ground.

I guarantee you that your perception of crime in SA is way out of proprotion to reality. It is indeed a serious problem but it does not warrant the amount of "research" and attention that you are giving it. Sadly, the articles you site prove just how unreliable the internet is as a source of information. True stories are used as a basis on which to report blatantly false information. I am FIRMLY of the opinion that the "journalist" in question has been irresponsible and is in my opinion, a blatant liar. She has used true stories and applied them to places and people that are not linked to such stories. Many of her supportive commentators are merely South Africans with an axe to grind. This is a common occurance. Her information is totally unreliable and I suggest you use a different website for information.

What I find interesting is that I get a sense that you think we are misinformed and need to convince US that the situation is much worse than we think that it is....you asked us for a fair and accurate understanding of what things are really like, and we have answered honestly and accurately!!!

If you do actually come here, I look forward to what you have to say once you return!!!!! It is just a real pity that you are ruining your trip before it even begins with unnecessary levels of worry. :(

PLEASE RELAX....you are WASTING far too much energy on this issue. Have you started planning your trip? What are your dates? Which camps do you plan to stay at???? We want you to get the most out of your trip.... :D

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Last edited by Bushmad on Sun Jul 13, 2008 2:04 pm, edited 3 times in total.

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Unread postPosted: Sun Jul 13, 2008 12:53 pm 
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:clap: Well said Bushmad!! :clap:

@ Mucman: I agree with Bushmad that with your present attitude and fears, any holiday is doomed. That is very sad.

I personally am returning to South Africa in October for my 7th visit since 1984, and my 3rd since 2006. As I have emphasised before, I am an older woman traveling alone and I share none of your concerns. Despite such scaremongering as you cite, I am returning to South Africa more, rather than less, frequently, because while I am aware of the actual, reliably reported, instances of crime, I also know from personal experience that such are unlikely to have any effect on my holiday.

Please, especially to any casual "guest" readers of this thread, rest assured that South Africa is a safe holiday destination in general, and SANParks even moreso. Being aware and taking proper precautions is advised in many/most tourist desitnations — I think the reports of purse snatching by thieves riding on scooters in places like Italy are far more alarming than anything I've experienced in South Africa!! If you do choose to visit South Africa and SANParks, I am sure that you will have an unforgettable and positive holiday experience. And that, as with many of us, your first visit will not be your last!

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Unread postPosted: Sun Jul 13, 2008 1:15 pm 
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Thank you Arks.... :thumbs_up:

@Mucman: I see that you have been to KNP before.....I take it you enjoyed yourself and thats why you want to return. Well, ITS EXACTLY AS YOU LEFT IT!!! :D

I have posted a comment on the website that Mucman mentions...once it is approved, go and take a look.

What I find offensive is that the "journalist" AGAIN calls the KNP (though not expressly) a "crime hot spot" - a bald lie.

And DEFENDS her position. I question the legitimacy of the website and I question the intentions of those who promote it.

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Last edited by Bushmad on Sun Jul 13, 2008 4:29 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Unread postPosted: Sun Jul 13, 2008 2:51 pm 
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Thank you,Arks! :clap: :clap:
You wrote down,what's in my mind! :thumbs_up:

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Unread postPosted: Sun Jul 13, 2008 8:19 pm 
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I have travelled a lot in my life. And the KNP is one of the few places where i didn't saw any form of crime. That is something that i can't say from the places that i visited in Brazil, Guatemala, Tanzania, Zimbabwe....... For me ,the KNP is like heaven.
Tomorrow morning i leave Belgium to go to South Africa. Ten days in the KNP.


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Unread postPosted: Sun Jul 13, 2008 9:17 pm 
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Location: 4 hours from KNP : South Africa
Here is the journalists response to us.

Quote:
Klerksdorp – Several really negative comments on my article regarding crime in South Africa and especially the mentioning of the Kruger Park being a “crime hotspot” has forced me to reply to these comments and questions.

Firstly, DON’T SHOOT THE MESSENGER! Naming some of South Africa’s most popular tourism destinations as crime hotspots is NOT unpatriotic or an attempt to undermine the government or any tourism or travel-related business’ efforts to ensure that South Africa stays one of the world’s top tourism destinations. It is, in fact, a harsh reality which cannot be wished away, no matter how hard we try.

Because I’m the editor of a travel website, it doesn’t mean that I should ignore real issues affecting the industry I’m working to promote. Quite the contrary. It doesn’t help ignoring the facts or adopting president Mbeki’s recent stance of “crime in South Africa is just a perception”.

It isn’t. It’s real, it’s affecting everyone in the country and it’s affecting the travel and tourism industry big time. A very recent news report stated that more than 600 restaurants have already fallen victim to armed robberies in a single year. Is that not cause for concern?

I have been criticised for especially mentioning that the Kruger Park is a crime hotspot and my apparent lack of statistics or evidence to qualify this statement. A quick search on the internet only managed to reaffirm my statement – during the past two years there have been more than 20 serious crime incidents in and just outside the Kruger Park which made headlines throughout the world.

The fact that the country is rife with crime also forced several foreign countries to issue travel warnings to their citizens planning trips to South Africa. The one which I think makes the most impact is from New Zealand: “Crime is a serious issue throughout South Africa. Travellers should be vigilant at all times, especially at bus stations, airports (especially the OR Tambo Airport), as organised gangs are known to operate there. In Johannesburg visitors should be especially vigilant in the central business district as muggings and carjackings are prevalent... Caution should be exercised in Pretoria. You should be careful at all times in the city of Durban and by the beachfront. Carjackings are common in this city. Muggings can occur anywhere at any time. Cape Town visitors who go to Table Mountain should only go in groups to minimise the risk of attack. Those wishing to visit the townships should only do so as part of an organised tour by a reputable company."

The UK and several other European countries have issued similar warnings.

Am I therefore being unpatriotic and unproudly South African if I worry about the crime trends? Am I being spiteful if I mention it and undertake to publish a full investigation within the next week or two? My main aim with this debate is to try and convince the key role players in travel and tourism, i.e. the government, local government, and the ministries of tourism, that the time to act is now and that whatever efforts they have put into place so far, are not enough. The 2010 Soccer World Cup is looming and even if the structures are completed on time, the visitors will be conspicuous by their absence if the country can’t honestly be punted as a safe destination.

In the Kruger Park, for instance, since this is apparently the most popular destination for foreign tourists and the subject which evoked our readers’ ire this week, more than a hundred illegal immigrants and gun runners are caught inside the park each day. And that’s only a conservative estimate. Who knows how many more slip past the police?

Two police stations have been set up inside the park where 144 police officers have the difficult job of trying to curb all kinds of crime. Yet, despite these valiant efforts, several armed robberies have taken place inside and at different gates of the park. Motorists have been hijacked inside the park and just outside, on their way to their camps. Heavily armed poachers pose life-threatening dangers to tourists and game rangers alike. Just recently, a large car smuggling syndicate was busted by the police. The park is one of the main routes for illegal immigrants who, upon arriving in South Africa, and armed with smuggled weapons, pose a real danger to park visitors and locals eking out a meagre living on the outskirts of the park. And just recently a holidaymaker from the Western Cape was murdered a few kilometres from the park’s fence in Marloth Park.

I am not the only one worried about the effect crime is having on tourism in the country. Important role players in the industry have also voiced their concern. One managing director of a large hotel group – who, by the way, dedicates his life to promoting his country overseas – has admitted to starting to feel disheartened by the events in South Africa, mostly because he has been a victim of crime several times already and knows how high the crime figure is in the industry.

“I attend international trade fairs and when asked by key tour operators if it is safe to visit the country, I have to think fast on my feet and avoid the emotions I have experienced and think of the business opportunities before answering their questions. Hopefully the tourists visiting as a result of one’s efforts are not those targeted at OR Tambo or other tourist attractions.

“I am a loyal South African … I feel passionate about the opportunities in this country and don’t see myself as a ‘victim’, but with all the recent incidents, I am no longer as confident,” he says.


Quote:
If visiting Kruger Park be aware of the danger of carjackings inside the park and those leading into the park.

I have never ever in my life heard of a visitors car being hijacked in Kruger Park. Yes some car hi jackers were caught in KNP a couple of weeks go but where enroute to Mozambique. The cars here hijacked in Hazyview area which is out of KNP. Our brilliant police managed to track the stolen vehicles into KNP, and stop the stolen vehicles getting to Mozambique

The impression said journalist gives is that the cars were hi-jacked from visitors in the park :roll: :roll:


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Unread postPosted: Sun Jul 13, 2008 10:00 pm 
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I don't care much for patriotism if it is blind either.......but I have a very short fuse when it comes to lies in the press...something I have developed from seeing how rife this problem is.......regarding all kinds of issues and all countries.

She states at the very outset that "naming some of South Africa's most popular tourist destinations as crime hotspots is not unpatriotic..."

I agree.....but it is downright irresponsible and sensationalist if it is UNTRUE...she therefore assumes a moral high ground that does not exist!!!! And insists on perpetuating this fabrication.

She has labelled the KNP a "Crime Hot Spot" and this must not go unchallenged!!! I have posted two comments to the above article and I ask that everyone takes a stand here...do'nt attack her personally, focus only the KNP aspect and go for the jugular on THAT POINT ALONE. Be polite and reasonable and ask that she retract her statements abut KNP being as dangerous as she so ignorantly claims it to be.

She has obviously not visited KNP recently or perhaps EVER.

I have also emailed the editor (?) there is a contact name on the page with a very reasonable yet firm objection to this type of agenda journalism...it is something we all too often acept at face value...if you know something to be false...the do everything in your power to expose it as such!!!!

BTW Rusky...Mucman will probably come, he just needs a bullet proof vest...he is a brave man! (BTW Mucman...practice your leopard crawl...its just to get from the plane to the car, then you should make it to Kruger) However, Rusky is proof that even the death trap that is KNP and SA is not too scary for a brave Aussie! :lol: :lol: :lol:
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Unread postPosted: Mon Jul 14, 2008 2:47 am 
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BUSHMAD..... :clap: :clap: :clap: :clap: :clap:

You are on a role here man!!!!!!!!

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