Council security patrols continue

Council continues to work closely with local police to share information and coordinate the safety response. Photo: Rotorua Lakes Council

Rotorua Lakes Council security patrols are set to continue as safety in the city remains a key priority.

Intermediate and longer-term actions are also being developed as part of a community safety plan which will be consulted on as part of Council’s next Long Term Plan.

Rotorua Lakes Council’s Inner City Manager, Richard Horn, says security patrols and CCTV monitoring helps to deter antisocial behaviour and pick up activity that needs to be reported to police.

“It’s really important that our CBD is a safe and inviting environment that people want to be in, and ensuring Rotorua is a safe city for people to live in, work in, and visit, is a key priority for Rotorua Lakes Council.

“This summer our security patrols have been working hard to ensure just that. Throughout the Christmas break we’ve had patrols operating in the CBD seven days a week, from early in the morning until late evening Sunday to Wednesday, and later still on Thursday to Saturday when it is generally busier.

“We’ve also added a patrol vehicle to the operation which has been monitoring activity in the Fenton Street and Glenholme area, as well as parks and reserves outside of the CBD, including Te Pūtake o Tawa (the new forest hub off Tarawera Road), Hannah’s Bay reserve, and down Tītokorangi Drive (previously Long Mile Road).

“This level of patrolling is set to continue for the rest of summer,” Mr Horn says.

Council’s patrol teams include Council Safe City Guardians, Watchdog and VR Security staff. The patrollers are trained to spot behaviours that have the potential to escalate and respond to them before they become an issue. All patrollers have direct communication links to staff monitoring CCTV and to police.

The majority of incidents that do occur in the city are picked up via Council’s CCTV cameras which are monitored every day, particularly during busy times.

“This level of patrolling and monitoring gives us a really good overview of what’s happening across the city almost 24/7,” explains Mr Horn.

“Often the presence of our patrols is enough to deter the type of behaviours we don’t want to see in the city, but the police are also just a radio call away if needed.”

Council continues to work closely with local police who also operate foot and vehicle patrols, with inner city community constables providing additional support to local businesses, and advice and assistance as needed.

Mr Horn says a collaborative approach to city safety has been beneficial.

“We continue to meet regularly with police to share information and coordinate the safety response. This has led to a more comprehensive and efficient operation, and reduces duplication of work.”

Rotorua Police Senior Sergeant, Karl Konlechner, reinforces that anti-social or criminal behaviour should not be tolerated.

“It is vital people report anti-social and criminal behaviour or incidents to the police immediately so that action can be taken. Police, supported by council’s patrol teams, have the ability to respond to these situations but we need to know when and where they’re occurring. The more timely and detailed information people are able to provide, the more likely we’re going to be able to do something about it.

“This also means council and the police get an accurate picture of what is happening in the city which helps us to review and re-assess our collective response.”

Please report any anti-social or criminal behaviour to the police immediately on 111. To report a historic incident, or a non-urgent matter, phone police on 105.

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