Sevens street party sees 55 arrests

Last updated 11:24 03/02/2013

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Police were kept busy during the Wellington Sevens street party last night with 55 people arrested mostly for disorderly behaviour fuelled by alcohol and breaches of the liquor ban.

Fighting and aggressive behaviour also saw five people arrested and 30 evicted from Westpac Stadium on the second day of the Wellington Sevens, police said.

Inspector Simon Perry said although there were more evictions yesterday than on Friday, "improved measures" regarding drunk people entering the stadium had a positive effect on the crowd.

On Friday there were a total of seven arrests and 17 evictions made at the stadium.

Perry said many of the arrests were for minor offences such as fighting and offensive behaviour.

Wellington Free Ambulance central communications team manager David Ross said 62 people visited the stadium's triage centre with minor injuries, burns and heat exhaustion yesterday.

Of those, six were transported to Wellington Hospital, one for a medical issue, three due to injuries and two for intoxication.

Tougher measures to curb excessive drinking, including giving over 18 patrons wristbands helped keep the atmosphere "positive and happy", Ross said.

A handful of heavily intoxicated attendees had their wristbands removed, meaning they could no longer drink in the stadium.

Wellington Free Ambulance's triage located in party central on Courtenay Pl dealt with late-night revellers, taking the pressure off ambulance services, he said.

While the number of people it treated was unknown, typically staff dealt with intoxication and minor injuries, Ross said.

By 7.30pm on Friday, the first day of the sevens, 30 people had been seen by ambulance staff at the stadium, mostly for dehydration and minor injuries. Four had been alcohol-related.

Police were positive about fans' behaviour as the final whistle blew.

"Police will again be carrying out high visibility patrols throughout the city until 9am on Sunday morning.

Perry said officers at the stadium noticed a higher standard of behaviour than in previous tournaments.

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- The Dominion Post

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