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Dispute over blue lights leaves N2 unpatrolled

City of Cape Town officials say the use of blue lights isn’t authorised for use by private companies.

FILE: Police officials and forensic experts leave the scene where a police officer was attacked and stabbed to death while on his way to work on the N2 on 29 July 2015. Picture: SAPS.

CAPE TOWN - A dispute over warning lights has led to the suspension of a private initiative to patrol sections of the N2 highway.

The Somerset West Community Policing Forum and the Helderberg Crime Watch organised a private security company to patrol the highway, following a spate of deadly attacks on the road.

In one of the incidents in July, 50-year-old warrant officer Petrus Holz was accosted, robbed and stabbed near Macassar while driving to work.

The patrolling vehicles boast flashing lights.

However, the city's JP Smith says this is against the law and has suggested the company use a solid white light instead.

"At no point do they have the right or should they be using a flashing blue light. A vehicle should not be fitted with flashing blue lights; it's not legal for them to do so because the city doesn't have the legal power to allow anybody to use any of those lights. This is regulated by the national government."