Tanzania is a medium risk country with severe transportation risk, and significant crime risk. Street crime is extensive in all of the major cities and predominantly opportunistic non-violent. Crimes of opportunity include targeting people carrying bags, backpacks, computer cases, cameras, purses, or items left in plain sight inside a vehicle. Most of these snatch-and-grab crimes involve unarmed assailants. Assailants tend to operate in small groups, where only one person may overtly take part in a mugging. If the victim resists, additional members may appear with a knife/machete or, on occasion, a firearm.
As identified and reinforced by the OSAC crime and safety report ‘Bag snatchings from passing vehicles are extremely common and can be dangerous, particularly if the victim is using a cross-body strap. Few sidewalks exist, so pedestrians walk on the street; assailants drive near their intended victim, and an assailant grabs a bag and may drag the victim until the bag’s strap breaks. Many tourists, expatriates, and Tanzanians have suffered minor road rash to extensive injuries. In at least one case, a foreign visitor died in such an incident’.
Travel by road is High risk. Roads are unsafe and poorly constructed with no road markings, reduced visibility due to poor lighting, and unexpected hazards are frequent. Most locals are known to drive erratically while traveling through remote locations and these roads are considered dangerous.
Dar es Salaam late at night, be especially cautious when stopped at traffic lights. In order to avoid assault at isolated intersections, some drivers refuse to stop at lights, proceed cautiously after slowing down. Intersections may be very dangerous at night, regardless of which color shows on the traffic signal.
Road Traffic Collisions (RTCs) are frequent and are a result of inadequate driver training, lack of road discipline, very poor enforcement, and excessive speeding.