Warning against underage drinking

Balclutha police are warning teenagers under 18 they could face an instant $200 fine if found in a public place with alcohol, and those who supply them could be summonsed to appear in court.

Police alcohol harm reduction officer Constable Tom Taylor, of Balclutha, said there had been problems in the past with underage drinkers in public places over the holidays.

Two ways underage drinkers could gain access to alcohol was through older friends buying it for them or raiding their relatives' liquor cabinets.

It was also quite common for parents to purchase alcohol for their children and drop them off at the beach, which was an offence, Const Taylor said.

"I don't want to sound like a grinch, but I don't want to have to deal with people who have got injured or in trouble through being inebriated," he said.

Property damage and violence often went hand-in-hand with alcohol consumption, particularly by those under 18, he said.

"Consider this a warning from police. If those under 18 are caught with alcohol in a public place, they could be liable for a $200 fine, and those supplying them could be summonsed to court for supplying alcohol to minors."


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