A 17-year-old unlicensed driver led police on a 2.5km car chase through Westport streets at speeds of up to 80km/h yesterday afternoon, ending near Buller High School.
Westport acting sergeant Malcolm Lamont said the driver attracted his attention at the beach end of Derby St.
A police officer had indicated to another car carrying four young people that he wanted them to stop. However, the car following them immediately did a U-turn and sped off.
Lamont said the police officer then began a pursuit with siren on and lights flashing as the driver first turned into Lyndhurst then Hunter, Henley, and Domett streets in an attempt to elude him.
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The car turned on to Cobden Street and passed Westport North School, heading towards Buller High School, when the driver realised another police car was ahead on the road, so halted.
The police officer in the second car was about to lay spikes to stop the car, Lamont said.
The driver was arrested and would appear in Westport District Court tomorrow on charges of failing to stop and driving without a licence, he said.
The car, which the driver said belonged to a friend of his, had been impounded for 28 days.
Lamont said police had stopped the driver on another occasion earlier in the year. He was found then not to hold a driver's licence and had been forbidden to drive.
- Westport News