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Our clients, potential clients, or just people we have conversations with often ask us about the situations we endure and are witness to. Many people that are not in surveillance are not aware of what happens in our control rooms and what the process is when we come across an incident that needs to be reported or dealt with. So, today we are going to shed some light on this for you and give you a little feel of an insider’s experience on the job.


Remaining calm and professional in volatile situations is certainly a talent that not everyone holds. Nicolene, our Control Room Manager at TTK Surveillance and her control room staff have displayed an incredible ability to be able to make level-headed, swift decisions and react professionally to any situation that comes their way.

We recently spoke to Nicolene in order to gain some perspective on what she and her staff do and experience day in and day out to keep our clients and their valuables safe.

Nicolene is a first-hand witness to many of the frightening incidents that our team monitors through surveillance cameras on a daily basis. Nicolene manages the rapid response required for all incidents and compiles a detailed report post the occurrence for all our clients.

We asked Nicolene about one of the cases she had responded to, to find out exactly what took place, how it was monitored when she was alerted of the incident, and how she reacted to ensure the safety of the premises. Of course, the main question we are sure you all want to know is – was it a story that ended in Happily Ever After, did they get them? Have a read to find out the outcome.


Nicolene began to tell us the details about the first time she noticed strange activity on the cameras while monitoring the site. She divulged that at approximately 20:50 that evening, she and her team observed a suspicious male on the roof of the establishment next door. Cool, calm and collected as always, Nicolene swiftly made contact with an armed response operator to request the dispatch of a unit as quickly as possible. Nicolene reported that the SAPS were also contacted to be dispatched to the scene.

Straight after contacting the relevant units that needed to be dispatched to the scene, Nicolene made contact with the client to alert and inform them of the situation. To put their mind at ease, she made sure to explain all the details and informed them that the incident is under control and being closely monitored. She further explained that she would keep them updated if the scene should escalate.

While awaiting the arrival of the armed response and the SAPS, Nicolene closely observed the suspect to ensure she knew his whereabouts at all times to be able to report to the officers on arrival. She watched him climb over the fence, making his way into the premises. With this new information and the scene getting more intense, Nicolene made contact with the armed response operator again to get an estimated time of arrival. She provided the operator with information on the suspect’s whereabouts and how the incident has evolved since their last communication.

With an ETA on the back of her mind, Nicolene continued to monitor the suspect’s movements on site. She noticed that the suspect stole a case of alcohol and proceeded to place it over the wall and onto the roof of the building next door. The darkness and weight of the case thankfully got the better of him as he lost his balance and fell over the electric fence and onto the roof of the property next door, slowing down his getaway. The suspect regained his balance, got back to his feet, and then climbed off the roof with the case of alcohol and set in motion to flee the scene.

At around 21:00 pm Nicolene, with a sigh of relief, detected the arrival of the armed response vehicle onsite, shortly followed by the SAPS and the client who later informed us, was highly impressed with how Nicolene and her team responded to the incident as well as with the fast arrival from the armed response and the SAPS.


Don’t worry, we haven’t forgotten to answer your question, was it a Happily Ever After, did they get him? With a proud look on her face, Nicolien confirmed that the suspect was in fact apprehended and was taken to the police station where a case was opened up against him. And for those wondering what happened to the stolen items? The case of alcohol was returned to the client and went on to be sold.

During the nationwide lockdown due to COVID-19, the crime rate for most types of crimes went down in South Africa between April and June of 2020. However, the controversial alcohol ban saw the attacks on liquor stores increasing.

According to a Sunday times article (Source: ), police minister Bheki Cele hinted that a syndicate may have been behind the increase in alcohol theft in the country during the lockdown. He stated that 16 liquor stores had been robbed at that time. The police minister went on to say that he spoke to some of the criminals arrested for alcohol theft and reported that some of the crimes were planned and some were spontaneous. Cele called for a meeting with the SAPS management team, to ensure that they “engage liquor retailers to address this problem and work out a collaborative strategy towards mitigating this emerging risk.”

Due to the increase in alcohol theft, the need for surveillance has become a necessity for liquor businesses around South Africa. TTK surveillance offers both off-site and in-vehicle monitoring, helping you keep an eye out when you are not able to.

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