Essential Tips to Survive a Moped Gang Attack

Moped thieves move to steal woman's phone, as she's talking on it 5 photos
Photo: The Mirror
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Just last week, comedian Michael McIntyre became the victim of a moped gang attack, when assailants smashed the window of his car during his son’s pickup and stole his Rolex. McIntyre and his son were unharmed, but some victims aren’t as lucky.
Though declining, the number of moped gang attacks in London remains considerably large. Former Scotland Yard detective, terrorist consultant and author David Vicedette says that there are certain ways in which you can avoid becoming a victim. And if the moped thieves do target you, there are things you can do to ensure your survival and safety.

First, there are the common sense things: don’t flash your cash especially if you’re on foot or in crowded spaces, make sure you keep your mobile phone out of view, use your phone only if it’s urgent and in the most discreet manner (use bluetooth headphones and keep the phone in an inner pocket of your jacket), don’t be flashy in your choice of clothes and accessories.

Many of us love a good routine, and it’s precisely that which thieves count on. To avoid becoming a “regular,” switch up your daily routine by planning ahead and taking different routes to wherever you have to be each day. Again, don’t be flashy. If you must have more than one valuable item on your person, make sure you don’t keep them in the same place.

Worst case scenario, if you’re attacked, just let whatever the thieves got a hold of go: no handbag or phone is worth being dragged on the pavement by a scooter, as it’s been known to happen to victims. Insure your valuables on your home insurance so that you don’t regret losing them too much, should you be targeted by a moped gang.

And here’s where things get interesting: don’t do as McIntyre did when the assailants smashed his window with a hammer.

“[He] exited the passenger side of his vehicle when his driver’s side window was smashed by thieves with a hammer. He may have believed that he was being attacked by car thieves and was preparing to hand over his vehicle,” Vicedette says. “However, if you are stopped in your vehicle and you believe that your safety is at risk, stay in your vehicle. Drive off or simply move backwards and forwards so you’re not stationary. Make it difficult for people to get into the car. Attract attention. Drive to a safe place where you can seek help.”

“Don’t drive with your sunroof or windows open. Keep your doors locked. Consider installing special, inexpensive film designed to protect your windows in the event of a blunt force attack,” the expert adds.

When you stop in traffic, always leave enough room from the car in front to quickly pull out if you have to. If the thieves attack, make noise to attract attention, even if that means reversing and accelerating quickly until you hit the cars behind and in front of you.

Last but not least, get involved if you see an attack taking place. Bystanders’ strength is in their number, and if more of you manage to disable the thief’s moped, he will be easier to apprehend. Make sure you call the police immediately and hand over to them anything that might be of use, from recordings of the thieves’ voices to video footage and descriptions of the vehicles used.
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About the author: Elena Gorgan
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Elena has been writing for a living since 2006 and, as a journalist, she has put her double major in English and Spanish to good use. She covers automotive and mobility topics like cars and bicycles, and she always knows the shows worth watching on Netflix and friends.
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