Look­ing af­ter your mates

NO BULL Steve Bul­lock is the area com­man­der for Taupo po­lice, which en­com­passes Taupo, Tu­rangi, Toko­roa, Pu­taruru and Man­gakino po­lice sta­tions and ar­eas. This month Steve writes about keep­ing al­co­hol con­sump­tion over the Christ­mas pe­riod.

South Waikato News - - NEWS -

So much for sum­mer so far, yes some great hot days but a bit too much rain for my lik­ing. Hope­fully this rain does not lead to a drought like last year – sorry farm­ers I may have cursed us all. With Christ­mas and the New Year only days away I re­ally need to talk about drink­ing.

Be­ing merry is fine but too much more than that of­ten leads to mis­ery for our peo­ple and for our com­mu­nity.

Al­co­hol, liquor, booze call it what you like, it is fire­wa­ter if not con­sumed re­spon­si­bly.

A year or two back we did some anal­y­sis around po­lice calls for ser­vice in and around Christ­mas and New Year for the South Waikato.

A stag­ger­ing 70 per­cent of calls for po­lice ser­vice re­lated to al­co­hol, sadly many, many of th­ese where re­ports of fam­ily vi­o­lence. My ex­pe­ri­ence as a po­lice of­fi­cer for a few years now tells me that the key to re­spon­si­ble drink­ing is know­ing when to say when, and more im­por­tantly, hav­ing mates who will look af­ter you. The true mate is not the one who lifts you out of the gut­ter but the one who pre­vents you from fall­ing into it, there is that preven­tion word again, I love it.

A sim­ple test with al­co­hol is if you are think­ing ‘yeah nah’, then it is nah for sure. Trust your in­ner be­ing, if you are think­ing whether or not you should have one more then you have prob­a­bly had enough. Bet­ter safe than sorry I al­ways say. The same goes for your mates, if they are look­ing a bit weath­ered and not keep­ing up then let them be or get them help. So what if it is your round and you owe them one, catch it up next time, don’t get them to scull up. Be the re­spon­si­ble one.

Please do not even think about one more for the road, we have to com­pletely sep­a­rate drink­ing and driv­ing, they do not mix, ever. Sta­tis­ti­cally speak­ing we have more crashes at this time of the year, and more of th­ese are al­co­hol or drug re­lated. Year af­ter year we catch more drink or drugged driv­ers yet the num­ber of crashes tell us that we are still not catch­ing enough. If you are driv­ing on our roads this Christ­mas then ex­pect to be stopped, ex­pect to be breath tested and if you are over the limit then ex­pect to be pros­e­cuted, sim­ple as that. Our roads need to be safe, not ne­go­tiable.

Talk­ing about pub­lic safety, I want to say thanks to Gor­don Blake, Selina John and all the South Waikato Safer Com­mu­ni­ties Coun­cil who along with the Dis­trict Coun­cil and Toko­roa Po­lice have been toil­ing away on up­dat­ing sur­veil­lance cam­eras in Toko­roa. In the very near fu­ture we will be see­ing six fixed cam­era’s and two mo­bile cam­era’s ac­ti­vated in the town­ship. This up­grade will en­able the CBD to be mon­i­tored 24 hours a day and the mo­bile cam­eras can be in­stalled when and where they are needed. In terms of com­mu­nity safety this is mas­sive, crooks do not like be­ing iden­ti­fied and, as we know, any­thing that is bad for a crook has to be good for the com­mu­nity. Talk­ing about the Toko­roa CBD, thanks to the Cook Is­land War­dens for another great year of vol­un­tary work, tak­ing time out to help keep our com­mu­nity safe. ‘‘Me an­gaanga pakari koe, na te Atua e tu­taki meitaki mai, Te akameitaki nei au ia ko­tou no ta ko­tou an­gaanga meitaki I rave na te Cook Is­land War­dens.’’

Fi­nally I ask that we look af­ter each other this fes­tive sea­son, don’t abuse the booze or each other, keep an eye on your mates and an even closer eye out for crooks. Trust me they will be watch­ing you and wait­ing for the op­por­tu­nity to com­mit a crime. Lock up your good­ies and look out for your mates – it’s as easy as it gets.

Re­mem­ber, be safe, feel safe and if you want to drink, then drink safe, al­ways.

Merry Christ­mas and a Happy New Year to you all.

STEVE BUL­LOCK

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