Police are gearing up for the Christmas party season, with an extra 50 officers patrolling the city tonight.
About 90 frontline officers will be patrolling bars, alcohol ban areas and drink-drive checkpoints in an effort to curb crime and crashes during the Christmas party period.
Inspector Richard Bruce said police often saw high-spirited festivities taken too far.
"Enjoy your Christmas parties, but keep yourselves and your mates safe."
Bruce said about one third of recorded offences occured after the offender had been drinking.
"The risk is that when people overdo the alcohol they make poor decisions and end up becoming offenders or victims of crime or crashes."
Police will adopt an "anywhere, any time" policy on breath-testing throughout the city.
They will also be "rigorously enforcing" the zero alcohol limit for drivers under the age of 20.
The work is part of a joint operation between New Zealand and Australian police to target alcohol misuse.
Operation Unite aims to highlight the link between excessive drinking and the risk of injury, assault and other violence.
"We're calling on the whole community to reflect on their drinking behaviour, and on the potentially tragic consequences that have such a huge social and personal cost," Bruce said.
"For many people Christmas is already a stressful time, there's no need to add to it with excessive drinking."
Police advice for safe Christmas celebrations:
- Plan your night out ahead of time. Have a plan for how you're going to get home, before you go out.
- Arrange safe transport to and from your location, whether it's a sober driver, taxi, bus or dial-a-driver.
- Go out as a group and stay together. Look out for your mates and make sure they stay safe.
- Watch your drink - spiking drinks is rare, but can happen. If you're in doubt about your drink, get a fresh one.
- Don't drink and drive. Checkpoints will be operating anywhere, any time
SUMNER BOOZE BAN FOR NEW YEAR'S
Meanwhile, Sumner will have a 12-hour alcohol ban on New Year's Eve.
No alcohol will be allowed on the streets bounded by Scarborough Beach, the Esplanade and Heberden Avenue and from Marriner Street to the Sumner Boat Ramp from 7pm Tuesday, December 31 to 7am Wednesday, January 1.
This is in addition to the three-day permanent alcohol in the area every week from Thursday to Sunday.
- © Fairfax NZ News
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