18 Aug 2020

Man faces charges for allegedly trying to evade Auckland police checkpoint

7:02 pm on 18 August 2020

More than 2200 vehicles have been turned around by police at the checkpoints on Auckland's boundary.

A police officer directs a driver wanting to leave the city at a COVID-19 check point setup at the southern boundary in Auckland on August 14, 2020.

Police checkpoint in Auckland. Photo: AFP

Police said that, as of yesterday afternoon, more than 69,000 vehicles had been stopped since the checkpoints were set up last week.

But they say there was an incident yesterday where a man tried to evade the police at a checkpoint at Bombay on State Highway 1, by driving down the truck bypass lane.

There was a short pursuit, but it was called off because of the man's dangerous driving, but he was later located at a property in Drury and taken into custody.

He is facing a number of charges and will appear in court later this month.

Drivers are being reminded to ensure they have the correct documentation or, if required, an exemption to enter, leave or drive through Auckland.

Wait times at the 13 checkpoints are dropping, but drivers can still expect delays at peak times.

"Since our message yesterday, police has noticed an increased effort from members of the public to have documentation ready to show police at the checkpoints," Assistant Commissioner Richard Chambers said.

Meanwhile, more than 5000 applications for exemptions to travel in to, through and out of Auckland have been received by the Ministry of Health.

While some very limited personal and work travel is permitted, and people are asked to bring appropriate documentation to the checkpoints.

However, others who are not on an exemption list need to make their case to health officials.

Director General of Health Ashley Bloomfield says so far, 700 applications have been granted and 160 have been declined.

Dr Bloomfield says a team of officials is working to process the applications as quickly as possible.

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