Fake constable deters speeders in Warkworth
'Policeman Pete' might be the Rodney District's hardest working policeman.
Rain or shine, he stands on the roadside in Warkworth, keeping an eye on drivers on Matakana Rd.
He never complains, never takes leave, and he always stands up for what he believes in.
The poor bloke has never even had a sick day.
But perhaps that's more to do with the fact he's made of corflute.
Created by Snells Beach signmaker Leigh Sheehan, 'Policeman Pete' has been "on the payroll" for nearly two years.
Frustrated by the number of cars speeding past his business, ECM Signs, Sheehan decided to take the law into his own hands.
He printed a life sized British police officer onto corflute, set him against a power pole, and got him working 8am-5pm, five days a week.
His presence on the busy stretch serves as a reminder to drivers to slow down before the major Hill St intersection, dubbed "New Zealand's worst".
Since 2010, Sheehan has seen five crashes on the stretch of road during work hours alone - there have been more on weekends and after hours.
"The traffic backs up and people come around the corner speeding, lock up and crash," he said.
"I've got my wife that comes in here with the kids, and clients with kids. I just want to make sure people slow down."
Sheehan said the corflute constable has made a difference, and he's received calls from would-be speeders who braked when confronted with Pete.
"People have rung up saying 'you got me, you got me, I slowed down,'" he said.
But not everybody is on board - hardworking Pete has been subject to several complaints.
To Sheehan's knowledge, there have been two or three complaints made to the police, but luckily, the local officers have seen the funny side.
"The cops came up here, took some photos, had a laugh, and buggered off," Sheehan said.
"It makes their job easier if [drivers are] slowing down here, so they take it with a grain of salt. It's not really hurting anyone."
- Rodney Times