Government to part-fund bollards, physical defences to protect shops against ram raids

The Government will soon part-fund bollards and other physical defences for dairies and shop owners to help protect themselves against ram raids.

There has been a spate of ram raids recently, with shop owners worried about when they could be the next target.

There was disappointment a large $562 million police funding boost made on Sunday failed to target ram raids. 

But help from the Government on this is now one or two weeks away. Finance Minister Grant Robertson said on Monday afternoon it will soon part-fund the installation of bollards or other physical protection for shops. 

"The Government can carry a part of the cost, potentially quite a large part of the cost, of installation of those," he said.

The Government has previously helped fund about 1000 fog cannons for shop owners. But this time, it's looking at bollards - once it's figured out the local bylaws. 

"Whether there are alternatives to bollards because of that, or some other reason - but that is our intention, to provide that kind of support," Robertson said.

While the announcement for this will come within one or two weeks, it can't come soon enough for New Zealand's fed-up and scared shop workers. 

Government to part-fund bollards, physical defences to protect shops against ram raids
Photo credit: Newshub.

Just on Sunday night, an Auckland menswear shop was targeted. With his mates lurking down the footpath, the driver of an SUV veered sharply straight into the front door of the shop. 

It was a calculated 2am ram-raid right in the middle of Panmure that only took one minute. In that short space of time, eight armfuls of brand new clothes worth thousands of dollars were gone.

The shop owner is not insured.

"Not good. You start getting hit straight away," said Big Broz owner Vinod Ranchod.

Also overnight, a Glen Innes Liquor store was hit and further south in Hamilton, a ram-raid saw thousands of dollars worth of high-tech winter jackets cleared out. 

It's this specific type of youth crime that the Government said is getting out of control. 

"Since the latter half of last year, that's when we've suddenly seen this spike. That's why we call it a spike because you can very clearly see that's what's happening at the moment," Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said.