NSW police officers dispose of a wine cask bladder confiscated in an alcohol-free zone at Byron Bay Schoolies last month and will carry out similar operations on New Year’s Eve.
NSW police officers dispose of a wine cask bladder confiscated in an alcohol-free zone at Byron Bay Schoolies last month and will carry out similar operations on New Year’s Eve. Jay Cronan

Booze bans will greet 2010

ALCOHOL will be banned at trouble spots across the Northern Rivers on New Year’s Eve in an effort to prevent violence and keep celebrations family-friendly.

In Byron Bay people will not be allowed to drink or carry alcohol on roads, footpaths, car parks, beaches and parks.

A total alcohol ban will also be enforced in Lennox Head, and in parts of Brunswick Heads.

The country’s most famous New Year’s Eve celebration, on the Sydney foreshore, will also be alcohol-free – a move police have welcomed.

In Lennox Head the bans cover the main street, Williams Reserve, Lake Ainsworth, Seven Mile Beach and other parks in the centre of town. Glass is also being banned from these areas.

The bans starts at midday on Thursday and continue until midday on New Year’s Day.

It is understood extra police will be assigned to Lennox Head so the bans can be enforced.

Ballina Shire Council’s manager of open spaces and reserves, Jillian Pratten, said the restrictions were ‘necessary to help curb anti-social behaviour and encourage families to take part in and enjoy the festivities.

Byron Shire mayor Jan Barham said the restriction of alcohol in Byron Bay was part of a number of strategies developed by the council to ensure New Year’s Eve was a safe event and to curb antisocial behaviour.

“It will be a wonderful evening for families,” she said.

The town has been focused on keeping crowd numbers down and making New Year’s celebrations as low-key as possible since the riots of the mid-90s.

The alcohol-free zone is defined by Bay, Fletcher, Marvel, Butler and Lawson streets and includes the First Sun car park.

The prohibition area in Brunswick Heads includes Park Street, The Terrace and areas of Fawcett, Mullumbimbi and Fingal streets.

In Byron Bay police will be stationed on the railway crossing on the edge of the alcohol-free zone to remind revellers of the restrictions.

Police will either confiscate alcohol or give people the opportunity to take it back to their accommodation. A fine of $110 will apply to those caught with alcohol in the prohibited zone.

The bans in Byron Bay and Brunswick Heads will begin at midday on Thursday and continue until 6am on Friday.

NEW YEAR’S EVE ALCOHOL BANS
  • Lennox Head: Alcohol and glass banned from midday on Thursday until midday on Friday.
  • Byron Bay: Alcohol banned on beaches, roads, footpaths and car parks from midday on Thursday until 6am on Friday.
  • Brunswick Heads: Alcohol banned from midday on Thursday until 6am Friday.

DO YOU THINK ALCOHOL BANS PREVENT VIOLENCE?




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