The manager of a Whanganui service station has called for more to be done to stop a spate of armed robberies.
BP Whanganui East became the third business in a week on Saturday to be targetted by offenders brandishing weapons.
"I think police should do more patrolling, at least when it gets quiet at night time," manager Twinkle Randhawa told the Chronicle.
Randhawa said she was working in her office at the BP2go service station on Saturday night when she heard a staff member screaming.
The male staff member was taking signage inside as he prepared to close the store at about 10.25pm and was approached by two people, one armed with a crowbar and another with an axe.
He ran inside the building screaming and was able to lock himself safely inside of a room, as did Randhawa who was doing some work in the building's office.
"It was scary. My staff member was just putting everything inside. On the video footage I saw there were two people running after him and he just quickly came inside and started screaming," Randhawa said.
"He locked himself up and I locked myself up. They took our cash drawer and smokes, you know, the main thing that they are taking from everywhere."
The two offenders ran from the scene on foot and at this stage, police have been unable to find them, but carried out an examination of the scene on Sunday.
Randhawa was not sure what the value of the stolen cigarette's was, or the exact amount of cash, but she said it was "quite a lot".
She said that her store was also robbed last year and that more needed to be done to prevent these incidents.
"I think police should do more patrolling, at least when it gets quiet at night time. Even the street lights are not working here on Anzac Parade."
The staff member was shaken by the incident, but he is being supported and nobody was hurt.
In a statement today police said that they are committed to investigating the aggravated robberies and enquiries are continuing in relation to the Gull and Black Bull liquor robberies last week.
"Police are very concerned about recent aggravated robberies in Whanganui," the statement said. "We take this issue very seriously and are taking every opportunity to prevent harm.
"We recognise robberies cause significant concern amongst shop owners who feel unsafe and vulnerable to this violent crime."
Meanwhile plenty of locals have taken to social media to give their thoughts on the robberies.
Sea-jay Worrall wrote: "I worry so much about what this town is becoming. There must be a way of exterminating the scum".
Another poster, Lynda Lowe wrote: "Scary for the employees. You don't sign up for that s**t when you go to work to earn a honest wage".
Others suggested that drugs were to blame, or thought that shops that stay open late, such as service stations or liquor stores, might have to start closing at earlier times.
Earlier this week, senior sergeant Shayne Wainhouse said that Whanganui Police and Safer Whanganui will be holding a free business crime prevention seminar at the Cooks Garden Centre in Maria Place on Wednesday.
"The seminar aims to provide advice to local retail businesses on how to help prevent themselves becoming the victim of robbery.
"Topics covered will include crime prevention advice, police investigation procedures, implementing ways to prevent looking like a target and shop layouts that discourage theft.
"Police members from CIB and Forensics will be present to discuss investigation procedures and answer any questions retailers may have."
Business's interested in attending can register with firstname.lastname@example.org
Anyone who has any information in relation to these robberies can contact detective Greg Gray on 06 215 4138 or the Whanganui Police Station on 06 349 0600.