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Wellington Police happy with New Year's Eve behaviour

Police happy with New Year's Eve behaviour

Strategic work throughout the year helped Kiwis revellers enjoy a safe New Year's Eve, says a top Police boss.

Deputy Commissioner Mike Bush was on the beat with staff in Wellington last night.

"By and large, people enjoyed themselves in Wellington and around the country. It was business as usual at our traditional party hot-spots, with no major incidents related to the festivities," he says.

As usual, alcohol was at the root of most disorder but changes in the Police approach seem to be having a positive effect, he says.

Police officers are now working with licensees throughout the year to agree how bars should be run and how to keep people safe. "It's a joint approach that's been very successful. We hardly need to go into pubs now - the bar staff should take care of that while we take care of what happens on the streets."

On New Year's Eve itself, police officers were highly visible in party hotspots from early in the evening. "We don't over-police people and we're non-aggressive but we respond with urgency when needed. We find it's an approach that really helps to diffuse situations," he says.

Deputy Commissioner Bush is pleased messages about safe driving seem to be affecting drivers' behaviour.

"Most people are being responsible. The second lowest road toll since 1952 is great news - there's just that 1-2 percent that still need to get the message."

ENDS

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