Police warn long-range drivers

Tony Woodbridge
Tony Woodbridge
Two groups from Southland and Christchurch found in Oamaru over the weekend have been grilled about their movements by Oamaru police amid the Covid-19 lockdown.

They even had the same excuse for being outside their respective bubbles when stopped by police driving through the town — that they were forced to travel to due shared child custody arrangements, Sergeant Tony Woodbridge, of Oamaru, said.

Both groups were warned by police and told to return home, but were not charged.

The Government's Covid-19 website says parents that share custody of their children and live within an hour’s drive of each other can continue to go between the two if they have a shared bubble arrangement.

That was limited to two households to minimise the risk of spread.

If parents were more than an hour’s drive away, it was advised children stay in one home.

Sgt Woodbridge accepted such issues were difficult under the current circumstances, but said common sense must prevail.

"Kids who are in separate families are allowed to go between the homes, but we are telling people to be sensible about it. We don't want people travelling around too much."

Also spoken to over the weekend were several people known to police, many with a history of drug abuse.

"It's mainly our regular offenders that are out and about. Those are the ones we seem to be stopping more than anyone else."


Will Police also be warning that other well know long range driver, Simon Bridges, regarding his "commute" from Tauranga to Wellington?