Mechanical faults reason why flying squad fleet grounded

A file picture of the flying squad vehicle handover that took place last year
A file picture of the flying squad vehicle handover that took place last year
Image: File/Michael Pinyana

The Mdantsane Flying Squad has been grounded after the crucial crime-fighting unit found itself without a single functional vehicle.

All the vehicles are rotting away in garages with various mechanical failures and tyre punctures. The unit is one of the most important divisions with its fleet mostly used for high-speed chases during hijackings and robberies.

The Dispatch has reliably learnt that some of the cars were booked in the garages for dysfunctional emergency systems including sirens, blue lights, radio and a loudhailers.

Eastern Cape police commissioner Lieutenant-General Liziwe Ntshinga confirmed the situation but was quick to defend it.

In an emailed statement released by her office Ntshinga said: "It must be kept in mind that SAPS vehicles are utilised on a 24-hour basis and will from time to time be taken to the garages for mechanical failure and/or service."

Ntshinga further said: “SAPS can confirm that the lack of running vehicles at the Mdantsane Flying squad was brought to management’s attention and steps are being taken to address the situation.”

The Mdantsane Flying Squad is one of 14 units which benefited from June 2017 hand-over of 27 new top-of-the-range fleet valued at R16-million.

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