Cellphone alert test

The Ministry of Civil Defence and Emergency Management will test its emergency mobile alert nationwide this Sunday between 6pm and 7pm. All compatible cellphones will receive an emergency mobile alert. There is no need to sign up or download an app, just check to see if your phone is capable of receiving the alerts and make sure your updates are current. It is a test to help keep you safe if there is an emergency. In a real emergency, the alert could be sent to your cellphone if your life, health or property is in serious danger. To see if your phone is on the list, go to www.civildefence.govt.nz/emergency-mobile-alert/
Charges after chase

A farm manager who allegedly led Whangārei police on a pursuit has been remanded in custody until next week. No pleas were taken when Michael Paul Ross, 45, of Motatau appeared in the Whangārei District Court on Monday. He's facing charges of dangerous driving, failing to stop, refusing to give a blood specimen, possession of cannabis, and endangering transport. He allegedly led police on a chase from Western Hills Dr to Matarau Rd in Kamo about 10.30pm on Saturday. Ross will reappear on December 3.

Christmas parade canned

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Kaikohe will not have a Christmas parade this year. The event has traditionally been staged by the Kaikohe Business Association, although in recent years the association has passed it over to other organisations to run. The Kaikohe Rugby Club has done it for the past two years, but this year cannot find the time.

Man dies after crash

A 74-year-old man who crashed a car he was driving as a result of a medical event died on his way to the Whangārei Hospital. The crash happened about 8.40am yesterday along Kiripaka Rd, close to the Denby Cres junction. Sergeant Ryan Gray said the elderly man was heading into town when his car veered off the road and hit a tree. He had a front seat passenger. He died while being taken to hospital by St John paramedics. His death will be referred to the coroner.

Teachers to vote

Primary and intermediate school teachers and principals will start voting next week to decide whether to accept the Ministry of Education's latest collective agreement offers.
That offer, worth $698 million, did not move on an earlier offer to raise pay scales by 3 per cent a year for three years, but it included a new top step and the partial removal of a cap on qualifications for some teachers from 2020. It comes after teachers and principals took strike action last week for the second time this year. Voting begins next Tuesday. Elections will conduct the online secret ballot, closing at 6pm on Tuesday, December 4.