Zero-tolerance alcohol ban warning

Police in Waitaki say there will be a zero-tolerance approach to both underage drinking and people breaching the temporary alcohol ban around the Otematata township over Labour Weekend.

Waitaki community safety and development facilitator Helen Algar said the holiday weekend was fast approaching and with the expected increase in holiday-makers to the Waitaki Lakes area, it was ''timely'' to remind people of all the liquor bans in place in the Otematata area.

''It is important for parents to know that there is no supervised youth camp at Loch Laird over the Labour Weekend period. Responsibility for youth behaviour sits with parents and young people themselves.''

Senior Sergeant Jason McCoy, of Oamaru, said there would be ''no leniency'' shown to anyone under the legal age caught drinking alcohol.

''The law will apply, which means those under the age of 18 years need to make sure they are not drinking alcohol as this is an offence and will be enforced.''

Snr Sgt McCoy was unable to reveal how many police officers would be on duty, but said there would be extra police staff based in the Waitaki Lakes area to ensure a ''strong preventative policing approach in relation to alcohol-harm reduction, disorder and road policing''.

''It is hoped this extra policing resource will continue to ensure that the Labour Weekend holiday activities are enjoyed by all.''

A temporary alcohol ban around Otematata has been operated around Labour Weekend since 2009, and this year runs from October 25 to October 28.

The ban would extend to the southern town boundary, the boundaries of the Otematata Golf Course and the 80km speed-limit signs to the east and west of Otematata, and on Loch Laird Rd.

Waitaki District Council road safety co-ordinator Elton Crane added that holiday-makers should also take care on busy roads.

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