Safety measures see drop in crime in Table Mountain National Park

The Table Mountain National Park stretches from Signal Hill to Cape Point and is a 25,000-hectare area.

A general view of Table Mountain in Cape Town. Picture: Pixabay.com

CAPE TOWN - SANParks said that it had seen a drop in criminal activity over the past year at the Table Mountain National Park.

There were 7 incidents last year in 2019, while the year before it was 11.

The organisation said that this was attributed to a number of safety measures it put in place to prevent attacks on visitors.

Tamsyn Jeftha, a dedicated field ranger in her green uniform and radio in hand, was one of 128 rangers at the park and her duties included enforcement such as checking permits, making sure visitors are safe and also maintenance.

"We do daily patrols whether it be vehicle or foot patrols and while you're doing patrols, you also check maintenance or if anything is needed."

The Table Mountain National Park stretches from Signal Hill to Cape Point and is a 25,000-hectare area. It has 4.5 million visitors annually.

SanPark's Gavin Bell said that the park had an open access system which was predominantly where the hot spots were.

However, due to crime and the poaching of marine life they had staff deployed 24 hours a day, seven days a week. They did patrols, law enforcement, mountain rescues and visitor management. It even had a dog unit.

"We had a lot of assistance from SAPS - there has been a reduction but you need to be on your toes all the time because you tighten up one area and then they pop up in another area, so we need to adapt all the time."

Bell added that there were CCTV cameras set up in parts of the park and said they were monitored in real-time.