ACT Policing is urging revellers to drink responsibly and plan a safe night out this New Year’s Eve.
Police will have a highly visible presence patrolling the alcohol exclusion zones and the alcohol free events in Civic, and will be targeting anti-social behaviour and underage drinking. Police Operations will also be monitoring CCTV footage of the New Years Eve celebrations in Garema Place.
New Years Eve Operation Commander Superintendent Mick Calatzis warned those planning to drink excessively are putting themselves and their friends at risk.
“Alcohol affects your judgement and awareness of your surroundings, and can increase your potential of becoming a victim of crime. Many incidents that end in violence could be avoided, and it is important to watch your mates to ensure they stay save this weekend,” Superintendent Calatzis said.
“We are also encouraging parents to be aware of their teenager’s plans for the night, and who they will be at the New Years Eve event with. Most importantly, know how to get in contact with your teenager, and call or message them during the night to check everything’s alright,” he said.
There will be a strong focus on road safety, with dedicated ACT Policing traffic patrols testing drivers across Canberra. Last year, over 500 random breath tests were conducted by police on New Years Eve, with no drivers returning a positive result.
“Last year’s result of not detecting any drink drivers on New Years Eve indicates that the community planned their travel arrangements responsibly for the night, and we are hoping for the same result this weekend,” Superintendent Calatzis said.
“If you are going to drink on Saturday night, don’t drive as you will be caught. Organise a designated driver instead, or catch a taxi or ACTION’s Nightrider bus home.”
There will be road closures around the City for the New Years Eve celebrations:
— London Circuit between Petrie Plaza and Akuna Street from 5pm on Saturday until 2am on Sunday.
— Mort Street between Cooyong Street and Bunda Street from 5pm on Saturday until 2am on Sunday.
— During the fireworks display, other road closures will be implemented southbound on Northbourne Avenue from 8.50pm to 9.30pm, and also from 11.50pm to 12.30am. Traffic will be diverted left along Cooyong Street, into Ballumbir Street, Coranderrk Street, Parkes Way with access to Commonwealth Avenue. The laneway behind the Canberra Theatre will also be closed.
The public car park at the corner of London Circuit and Constitution Avenue will also be closed from midday on Saturday.
If you are attending the New Year’s Eve celebrations in the City, visit the ACT Government’s Events website to plan your night.