Windscreen washer sprays suds at kid
A windscreen washer squirted detergent at a child’s face in Auckland after their parent refused to pay them, police say.
The incident happened at the Mt Wellington Highway intersection - a hotspot for windscreen washers - on November 5.
Sergeant Rhys Smith says a motorist had refused to pay a window washer while waiting at the intersection.
The window washer then squirted a bottle of detergent, mixed with water, through an open window into the face of a child sitting in the back seat.
The incident is the latest in a number of cases where windscreen washers have intimidated motorists at busy Auckland intersections.
It comes as police deal with a spate of crime around washing hotspots including the Greenlane, Penrose and Great South Rd inter- sections.
Sergeant Rhys Smith says windscreen washers are responsible for a number crimes in the area, including shoplifting, car thefts and burglaries.
In one case, a car stolen from Greenlane was later found with window washing equipment stashed in the boot.
Windscreen washers have also been accused of stealing brushes from petrol stations, detergent from supermarkets and taking soap from McDonald’s stores and public toilets.
Police are planning to crack down on windscreen washing however, they do not have the power to do anything directly about window washers.
Window washers fall under Auckland Council’s Public Safety and Nuisance Bylaw.
If they are found to repeatedly breach the bylaw can be fined up to $20,000 by the courts.
Police expect window washing activity to pick up due to the warmer weather and are urging motorists not to pay washers.
Smith says some motorists have a misconception they are helping by paying window washers.
‘‘We do have the services there to help these guys,’’ he says.
‘‘But they seem to think window washing is easier than getting the benefit.’’
Call 111 or *555 if you feel intimidated by a window washer.