Police unite against alcohol abuse

Encouraging sensible drinking in NP

JENNA HOUGHTON
Last updated 05:00 10/12/2013
police alcohol
ROBERT CHARLES
ON PATROL: Senior Sergeant Thomas McIntyre is managing this weekend's Operation Unite, highlighting the misuse of alcohol.

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Police will be out in force this weekend to combat alcohol-related offences.

About 30 officers in New Plymouth, and teams from Hawera, Stratford and Waitara will be on the roads armed with breathalysers, or walking the beat in the CBD.

Officers will be checking patrons and licensed premises, and community patrol volunteers will provide extra eyes and ears on the roads from 6pm Friday 13, to 6am Sunday 15, while Operation Unite is in place.

Operation Unite is a joint operation conducted throughout New Zealand and Australia.

"Two days a year we highlight and encourage sensible drinking," Senior Sergeant Thomas McIntyre, New Plymouth, said.

"We challenge alcohol misuse, crime, violence and anti-social behaviour."

Alcohol is a factor in one third of all crime, and alcohol related harm costs society $4.9 billion to $16.1 billion a year, according to BERL and the Law Commission.

The operation is also fitting for the time of year, when road accidents spike over the silly season.

"People get drunk and do dumb things that have negative consequences. Think about behaviour, consider consequences," he said.

"You can have a good time without being silly. You don't want to become an offender or a victim because of how you're drinking"

The next big step in reducing alcohol related incidents will happen on December 18, when new legislation will affect the sale and supply of alcohol.

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- © Fairfax NZ News

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