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Police Appeal To Make Bike Event Safe

Police Appeal To Make Bike Event Safe

New Zealand Police Central News Release

11:50am 4 December 2008


The organisers of an annual pushbike pub crawl are being urged by police in Hawera to identify themselves and take responsible steps to make this year's event both legal and safe.

The move comes as South Taranaki District Council temporarily extends its liquor ban area to include the entire route of the pub crawl.

Hundreds of cyclists converge on the area from far and wide, stretching police resources as officers face intoxicated riders with little apparent regard to their own safety or the safety of others. As well as the obvious dangers associated with drink and the roads, there have been incidents of assault and disorder, numerous complaints from motorists held up by the event, and local businesses closing early to avoid problems.

Many riders are not wearing safety helmets or are wearing inappropriate helmets. Likewise organisers are not putting in place any signage or safety equipment which is increasing the risk of someone being seriously or fatally injured. Last year five people, believed to have been involved in the event, attended the Hawera emergency department with road crash injuries and two people with assault injuries putting avoidable pressure on health professionals.

Sergeant Robyn Burnett said: "This is not about the police being killjoys, this is about making sure the event adheres to the law, that people are safe and that there is minimal disruption to the local community and motorists. If this is the intention of the organisers then they should step up to the plate and work with us to make sure it happens."


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