The Central App

Speed message not getting through to motorists

The Central App

Aimee Wilson

09 July 2024, 5:30 PM

Speed message not getting through to motoristsMotorists are failing to drive to the winter conditions. PHOTO: File

Central Otago police ticketed almost 100 motorists last weekend for speeding, with four drivers clocked travelling between 136km/hr and 150km/hr.

Alexandra Police Senior Constable Graham Perkins said officers issued 61 tickets in Ranfurly, 24 in the Cromwell/Tarras area and a further 16 around Alexandra.

Three licences were suspended and the roads were certainly busier, with many motorists coming through for the ski fields, he said.

On July 6, a semi-professional snowboarder was stopped at Ranfurly where she was seen driving on the wrong side of the road for about three kilometres.

Snr Const Perkins said another motorist videoed her driving and when the police officer stopped her, she was clocked speeding at 114km/hr.

The snowboarder, who was visiting New Zealand for the month, was allegedly seen cutting corners as well as driving on the right rather than the left, “but didn’t expect it was a problem,” he said.

She faced dangerous driving charges and is due to appear in the Alexandra District Court this month.

The man using his umbrella in the Queenstown Gardens last week as a fake pistol decided to repeat the incident a second time.  

The first incident sparked an armed police call out and evacuation of the area.

Snr Const Perkins said the man has been referred to mental health services.

Police were unable to lay charges because he was in a public place with an umbrella, not a weapon, and other than talk to him, there was little they could do about it.

Also in Queenstown last week, an offender known to police jumped into a parked car that was left running outside the Night ’n Day, and sped off towards Arrowtown.

CCTV footage located him heading out of town towards Gorge Rd.

Snr Const Perkins said road spikes would’ve been deployed near Avalon Station but the man sped up to 181km/hr making it too dangerous to do so.

He was followed by police to the Wanaka waterfront after they found the vehicle still running with the door left open, as the man continued his getaway on foot.

He was eventually arrested near the jetty and faces charges, including four unrelated for other matters, including theft and unlawfully entering a building.

He has been remanded in police custody and is awaiting a court appearance.