“Dunedin police were forced to don riot gear and use pepper spray to disperse student mobs during overnight partying after the controversial Undie 500 rally arrived in the city.
About 20 were arrested after more than 600 people pelted officers with bottles, bricks and bicycle parts in the student stronghold of North Dunedin.
The 70 officers took about two hours to disperse the students.
The annual Undie 500 event, organised by Canterbury University engineering students, involves a pub crawl from Christchurch to Dunedin, in cars worth under $500.
The event has previously caused headaches for Dunedin police left to control riotous behaviour at the end of the trip.
Last year’s official Undie 500 was cancelled after rioting in the city resulted in 69 arrests the previous year.
However, an unofficial version of the event still ran and 30 arrests were made after another round of disorder.
Most of last night’s action centred in the three blocks around Castle Street, with mobs setting furniture and piles of rubbish on fire in Castle and Leith streets, Dunedin Area Commander Inspector Dave Campbell said.
One officer was hit in the head and knocked down with a hurled bottle, and would have been seriously injured if not for his helmet, he said.
Flying bottles hit two or three other people, who had to be taken away by ambulance for treatment.
Mr Campbell said there would be a boosted police presence this weekend and anyone arrested would gain a criminal record, due to a no-diversion policy…….more here“
Good grief! these are supposedly the elite, most intelligent and able young people on which the future prosperity of New Zealand depends. Heaven help us all, have they nothing better to do? And as for the billion dollar, international student market what right thinking family is going to chose to invest in sending their kids to such a place?
A number of residents were injured during the riot when they were caught in cross fire between the students and police. The city’s mayor believes the rioting is symptomatic of the harm alcohol is doing to society