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Police Swiftly Respond To Illegal Street Racing Event, Hawke’s Bay

The sun was setting on a grey and misty Hawke’s Bay evening as hundreds of people were gathering for an event on Saturday night intent on conducting illegal activities on our roads.

Police were suiting up too and rolling out in teams across Hawke’s Bay in large numbers to prevent illegal behaviour on the roads and keep other road users safe.

“Our priority was to keep the public safe. We do not tolerate drivers doing burnouts as they cause immense damage to our roads, and risk the lives of themselves and innocent members of the public on the road,” says Road Policing Manager Inspector Angela Hallett.

Police worked in collaboration with our partner agencies to prevent and disrupt the event that took place on Saturday 18 November.

“Fire and Emergency, Hato Hone St Johns, Waka Kotahi and local councils, supported Police as we received calls for service and enabled the most effective and safe response to incidents as they arose.”

Police received over 30 calls for service in relation to illegal street racing and traffic offending overnight and had a heavy enforcement presence throughout the night.

“The driving behaviour is unsafe and puts the participants and other motorists at risk and damages the roads.

“There is also a real risk for Police to be targeted while responding to reports of anti-social driving and staff from across Eastern and specialist personnel from Waikato, Central, Auckland, Bay of Plenty and Wellington were deployed to assist.

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Fireworks were used by this group against law enforcement during their activity, and we took strong measures to keep our staff safe and reduce harm to innocent members of the public.

Police took swift action to hold offenders to account on the night, impounding at least nine vehicles involved in the illegal activities.

“As a region, Hawke’s Bay has been through a lot after Cyclone Gabrielle, and a lot of our roading network is still recovering,” says Inspector Hallett.

A group of approximately 200 vehicles participating were stopped, and over the course of the evening drivers breaching their licence conditions were held to account, they had to have appropriate licenced persons come and pick them up.

Vehicles were checked for compliance, and all drivers were breath tested.

Police are still collating the results of the evening; however, dozens of people were in breach of licencing conditions and were committing other offences and nine vehicles were impounded.

A number of drivers were over the legal breath alcohol or blood alcohol level and summonsed to Court, and some arrested.

“Our disruption activities last night, put a stop to dangerous driving behaviour of those involved. Police will take enforcement action and hold those to account.

“Police will continue to focus our efforts on those whose driving behaviour puts themselves and others at risk, particularly as we head into Summer.”

Reducing death and serious injury on our roads is at the heart of what we do.

Police are reviewing footage of the activity on the weekend, to identify the vehicles and people that were involved to hold them to account swiftly.

Police across Hawke’s Bay will continue our efforts to keep roads safe from anti-social road user behaviours in the lead-up to and during the holiday period.

Motorists can expect to see Police anywhere, anytime. Police will continue to be out in force.

© Scoop Media

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