Monday, June 24, 2024

Police kept busy with COVID compliance

Police continue to have a highly visible presence in the community, with over 4,000 reassurance visits to essential facilities and more than 6,000 directed patrols since the current Alert Level 4 restrictions came into effect.

As of 5pm yesterday, Police have conducted 4,483 reassurance checks at essential facilities and 6,041 directed patrols for reassurance or prevention since Alert Level 4 began, Police Commissioner Andrew Coster confirmed today.

While compliance has generally been very good across the country, he said a small number of incidents continued to attract Police attention.

“Officers will remain out and about in our communities, particularly at high-demand locations such as supermarkets and COVID-19 testing and vaccination sites,” the Commissioner said.

Police are urging New Zealanders to do the right thing by wearing a face covering when accessing essential services.

“Failing to comply with this requirement puts essential workers and our communities at risk. While Police continue to engage and encourage compliance, we will not hesitate to take swift enforcement action when necessary,” Commissioner Coster said.

He said that Police were largely pleased with the response to Alert Level 4 restrictions so far.

“As of 5pm yesterday, 29 people have been charged with a total of 33 offences nationwide since Alert Level 4 began. These arrests are primarily the result of protest activity.”

“Of the 33 charges filed, 16 are for Failing to Comply with Order (COVID-19), 12 for Failure to Comply with Direction/Prohibition/Restriction and five for Health Act breaches.”

In the same period, 85 people were issued with formal warnings. Thirty-two of the formal warnings were for Failing to Comply with Order (COVID-19), 21 for Failure to Comply with Direction/Prohibition/Restriction and 32 for Health Act breaches.

Police have received a total of 5848 online breach notifications – 3526 about a gathering, 1788 about a business, and 534 about an individual.

In addition to the Online Breach Reports, a total of 4110 Covid-19 related calls were made to the 105-phone line. The majority (2898) of calls were requests for information, and 1212 were to report perceived Covid-19 breaches.

From 19 August 2021, Police began issuing infringements for COVID-19 related breaches. As at 5pm on 22 August 2021, Police have issued 365 infringements nationwide. The breakdown of these total offences is as follows:
• Person failed to remain at current home / residence – 328
• Person failed to wear a face covering on premises – 15
• Person failed to comply with applicable physical distancing rule – 13
• Obstruct/Hinder Medical Officer of Health or Person Assisting Med Officer – 6
• Person failed to wear a face covering on public transport – 2
• Person in control of premises failed to close as required – 1

Over the weekend four people in Northland were arrested after police investigating two separate alert level breaches also found evidence of drug-related offending.

“In Whangamatā, Police had to remind a steady flow of people that the fine weather was not an invitation to take a Sunday drive to the beach or do a recycling drop-off at the local transfer station. As a result, we have issued a number of formal warnings,” the Commissioner said.

“And in Taupō a mountain biker who fell on a bike track had to be winched out by rescue helicopter and taken to hospital. Police will be speaking to the biker at a later date and enforcement action for breaching restrictions will be considered.”

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