Good Friday gone bad: Police say road behaviour in Gisborne 'disrespectful' following recent 'tragic events'

Police say the road behaviour in Gisbroen is 'disrespectful' following recent events.
Police say the road behaviour in Gisbroen is 'disrespectful' following recent events. Photo credit: Getty Images

Police have described road behaviour in Gisborne as "disrespectful" after impounding 10 vehicles so far this Easter weekend.

Five vehicles were impounded on Friday night, with another five on Saturday night. 

"Good Friday turned bad quickly for a number of Gisborne's anti-social road users, as police executed an operation targeting illegal activity on our roads," a police spokesperson said. 

Along with impounded vehicles, 50 infringement notices were issued, and police apprehended three suspended drivers exceeding the alcohol limit.  

"We are incredibly disappointed with the behaviour that these people continue to display on our roads," Tairāwhiti Area Commander Acting Inspector Danny Kirk said. 

"This not only causes risk to people, but also damage to the roads, and it is very disrespectful  - particularly given the tragic events of last weekend, and the ongoing recovery of our community following Cyclone Gabrielle and other weather-related events." 

Police said damage to local roads from illegal activity is still being assessed. 

"Work to disrupt this behaviour and hold those involved to account is not over, and we will be reviewing footage and further information received by the public, to further identify vehicles and people involved. 

"We will also be investigating a number of 111 calls that were made on Saturday night, which we've since confirmed were hoax calls made by these anti-social road users in an attempt to divert police attention from their illegal activities on our roads." 

Specialist staff from other areas were brought in to assist in the operation, along with partner agencies including Fire and Emergency New Zealand, Hato Hone St John, Waka Kotahi and the Gisborne District Council, as well as roading contractors, and bailiffs from the Ministry of Justice. 

"I want to acknowledge the staff involved for their efforts on this operation, and to thank all of our partners for the valuable assistance," Kirk said. 

"It has been an incredibly unsettling week for residents of Gisborne, and we have had an increased presence in the region throughout the week to reassure locals." 

"We do not tolerate this behaviour and will continue to take action by issuing infringements and impounding vehicles if necessary." 

Police urge people to report any illegal road activity by calling 111 or 105.  

"Gather as much information as you can safely do so, including vehicle registration and description or video footage." 

Information can also be provided anonymously via Crime Stoppers on 0800 555 111.