COVID-19: Dunedin Police called after bus passengers refusing to wear face masks

Police were called to an incident in Dunedin on Thursday where people were refusing to wear face masks on public transport.

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins announced face masks would be required for all Kiwis using public transport following new community cases.

While the alert levels decreased on Wednesday night, the mask mandate will continue until the levels are re-evaluated on Monday.

However not everyone has been complying.

A spokesperson for police confirmed they were aware of an incident where people refused to wear masks on a Dunedin bus. They said officers were not required to attend as the matter was eventually resolved.

But they said on the whole, Kiwis have been abiding by the rules.

"Dunedin Police have been pleased with the overall general compliance by the public when it comes to mask wearing on public transport this week and continue to focus on engagement, education, and encouragement as we collectively contribute to ensuring the safety of all New Zealanders. 

"Extra officers have been patrolling high-volume areas around peak times to ensure everyone is aware of the rules and what they need to do to keep safe."

The spokesperson said police are encouraging all Kiwis to comply with health restrictions, as they are in place to keep everyone safe.