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Crimeline: Winter hazards are here

The Wānaka App

Tony O'Regan

14 May 2024, 5:04 PM

Crimeline: Winter hazards are hereSenior sergeant Fiona Roberts

As winter approaches and temperatures begin dropping below zero Wānaka Police are highlighting the need for more care on the region's roads.

Senior sergeant Fiona (Fi) Roberts said weather conditions are very changeable and there are more hazards on the road so it’s important to watch your speed and drive to the conditions.

“Don't always rely on your car electronics to say that it's icy outside,” Fi said. 

“Especially some of those areas that don't get sunlight throughout the winter months.”

Fi said fog, rain and snow can dramatically reduce visibility and black ice is a hidden hazard. 

“In snowy or icy areas try not to accelerate or decelerate quickly. Accelerate smoothly and brake

gently,” Fi said.

Keep up to date with Roads in your Wānaka App.


Coastguard Wānaka Lakes welcomed sergeant Darren Cranfield, senior constable Stephen Burke and Wānaka LandSAR chair Bill Day to spend a few hours with the Coastguard crew on Saturday (May 11) morning.

The initiative involved a familiarisation of the Coastguard vessel to understand its capabilities and a refresher on the Boating Safety Code.

Fi said police received a report of a stolen boat on Monday (May 13) only to find that it had slipped its mooring and was sitting at Ruby Island.

“A message for boaties coming into winter ... if you don't want to lose your boat, just make sure those moorings are nice and secure,” Fi said.

Road Policing

Two evidential breath tests recorded “seriously disappointing readings” over the weekend, Fi said. Both were just below 1,000 micrograms (the legal limit for over 20 years of age is 250 micrograms).

The impairment protection team will be back in Wānaka this week and Fi said the community should expect patrols “anytime, anywhere”.

District Commander

Southern District's acting district commander Jason Guthrie was in Wānaka last week.

Jason has had a 30-year career in the police, including 16 years in the Armed Offenders Squad as an operator, team leader and commander. He was also deployed to Afghanistan in 2011 for an eight-month assignment as part of Operation Highland.

When he is not the acting district commander, he is the director of integrity and conduct for Southern Police based at the Southern District Headquarters in Dunedin.

Domestic violence

Fi said that domestic violence is a continual focus of police. 

It's just an ongoing thing for us, and mental health,” Fi said. 

“My key messages around that are it's not just a policing issue, it's [about] seeking the right support in our communities, and we all know how challenging that is in that mental health space as well.” 

PHOTO: Wānaka App