Speeding, drink driving, busier roads ... police could be forgiven for thinking there isn't a country-wide level 4 lockdown in place.
Data from Waka Kotahi/NZ Transport Agency shows a higher number of traffic on the roads compared to the March 2020 lockdown.
A spokesperson for the agency said that was likely partly attributed to the amount of people getting their vaccinations, Covid-19 test and an increase in freight.
The Ministry of Health was grappling with 24,402 contacts and 277 positive cases - 263 of which are in Auckland and 14 in Wellington.
While the roads were busier in the North Island this lockdown, there had been a marked difference in numbers compared to the week before restrictions kicked; drops of as low as 66.2 per cent - Hamilton - and as high as 78.1 per cent in Wellington.
Of the five main centres, Christchurch was the only city to record drops in traffic every day, although that had gone from 22 per cent down to just 6 per cent by Wednesday.
Auckland, unsurprisingly, was 57 per cent busier than the 2020 lockdown on August 18; that then dropped to 26 per cent more traffic before settling on 32 per cent by Tuesday.
Wellington had an average daily traffic count of 9849 vehicles during the March, April lockdown.
However, that peaked as high as 14,359, or 46 per cent, on the first day of level 4.
It had remained above 10,000 vehicles, apart from the weekend, since, and drivers weren't abiding by the road rules.
Drunk drivers and speedsters had been plaguing Wellington roads, mainly its highways, policing manager Inspector Wade Jennings said.
On the first day of lockdown, Jennings' team had issued 111 infringements for speeding.
Up until Tuesday this week, police had pinged a barrage of speedsters with motorists caught travelling 130km/h, 145km/h, 160km/h and most recently, and disappointingly, 177km/h.
On Monday, five people were caught drink driving. One man blew around 1200mcg. The legal limit is 250mcg.
"We were hugely disappointed with the driving behaviour for the first week.
"People just speeding around. Wen you look at the current traffic flows at the moment, if you're going somewhere, you will get there quicker than you would ever get there because isn't a gridlock, there isn't the traffic, if you drive at the normal speed.
"What reason under level 4 have you got to speed? There isn't anything urgent that you all should be going to. You're not missing flights or anything.
"It's just a case of the roads being so open out in front of them."
However, the crazy behaviour had finally eased.
"To the credit of everyone it has definitely dipped away in the last couple of days," he told the Herald on Thursday. "The past 24 hours were our best since lockdown started."
Most of the offending had been happening on highways as opposed to the CBD, where the roads had been quiet, he said.
"Anecdotally there is a lot more people out and about. Exactly why I couldn't tell you. Obviously vaccinating and testing will be a part of it, but there will also be another part as well."
In Hamilton, police had been alarmed by the incidents of speeding in urban suburbs.
On Thursday morning, Waikato road policing manager Inspector Jeff Penno said two people had been snapped travelling more than 80km/h in a 50km/h zone.
"The main concern I have got currently is the speed that we're finding on the roads.
"We don't have the traffic that tends to moderate the speeds and we are really disappointed with the number of speeding motorists that we're apprehending.
"The primary focus of road policing is speed, because there's a lot of people walking, there's a lot of vulnerable people out there and the speed that we're seeing, particularly in urban areas, if you hit a pedestrian at 60km/h you're probably going to kill them."
He labelled incidents of speeding as "ridiculous" and those behind the wheel "just totally selfish".
"Because if something goes wrong they're going to be taking up valuable hospital beds that we need should we have an outbreak in our community."
He had noticed an increase in traffic, which he partly attributed to testing and vaccination but also the city's hospital and food manufacturer workers.
Waikato had not experienced any fatal crashes, but they had occurred in Northland, Bay of Plenty and Canterbury.
Christchurch road policing manager Inspector Natasha Rodley declined to elaborate on any issues but said police had noticed an increase of traffic on local roads, both urban and rural.
"We would like to remind people that they should be travelling to access essential services only, and should be obeying all road rules, including speed when driving.
"Empty roads are not an invitation to speed."
2020 LOCKDOWN VS 2021 LOCKDOWN
Average traffic during March/April 2020 - 24,619
August 18 - 38,738 or 57% increase
August 24 - 32,394 or 32% increase
Average traffic during March/April 2020 - 9,849
August 18 - 14,359 or 46% increase
August 23 - 10,617 or 8% increase
Average traffic during March/April 2020 - 3,807
August 18 - 2,960 or 22% decrease
August 24 - 3,575 or 6% decrease
Average traffic during March/April 2020 - 7,810
August 18 - 10,846 or 39% increase
August 24 - 10,730 or 37% increase
Average traffic during March/April 2020 - 2,963
August 18 - 4,423 or 49% increase
August 24 - 3,997 or 35% increase
Comparing week before and first week of August 2021 lockdown:
• Auckland 73.2% drop in light traffic, 67.3% heavy traffic drop
• Wellington 78.1% drop in light traffic, 65.2% heavy traffic drop
• Hamilton 66.2% drop in light traffic, 47.1% drop for heavy traffic.
• Christchurch 67.5% drop in light traffic, 60.9% drop for heavy traffic.
• Dunedin 74.3% drop in light traffic and a 69.3% drop for heavy traffic.