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MIL OSI – Source: New Zealand Police – Celebrate St Patrick’s Day by being a good mate Canterbury Police staff patrolling in Christchurch City this morning and over lunchtime reported there was a happy family atmosphere in the city with a few people enjoying an Irish themed breakfast and entertainment at licensed premises.

Inspector Paul Fremaux, who is overseeing today’s District-wide Operation, says “This is the first St Patrick’s Day with the lower alcohol limit and we urge revellers to drink responsibly and think about how they are going to get home if they are intending on drinking alcohol.  We have additional prevention and road policing staff rostered on to undertake high-visibility patrols in the entertainment areas to make sure everyone has a good reason to remember their St Patrick’s Day celebrations” “We are expecting tonight to be almost as busy as a typical Saturday night in some of the licensed premises in the District.  Alcohol is a major contributor to crimes such as disorder, violence and sexual assaults with a third of all recorded offences in New Zealand committed after an offender has consumed alcohol.  An intoxicated person is at risk of making poor decisions and ending up becoming an offender or victim of crime or crashes” explained Inspector Fremaux. Additional staff will be deployed from 12 noon until early tomorrow morning and checkpoints will be in operation across the District to target drink-driving. Canterbury Police take an anytime anywhere approach to breath testing and every driver stopped will be breath-tested, enforcing the new lower alcohol limits of 250mg of alcohol per litre of breath that came into effect last year.  There is still a zero alcohol limit for drivers under 20 years old and this will also be enforced. “No matter where you celebrate St Patrick’s Day, rurally or in the city, don’t think you can ‘get away’ with another alcoholic drink if you’re driving.  You are not only putting yourself at risk but other road users and members of your community.  If you plan on leaving your vehicle parked up overnight, park in a safe area and make sure you secure any valuables out of sight and lock doors and windows” said Inspector Fremaux. Stay safe and don’t become one of our statistics. “The two most effective ways to control the effects of alcohol, without moderating your drinking, is to eat food and drink water regularly.  We want St Patrick’s Day 2015 to be remembered for the right reasons in the District.  Be a good mate, look out for others in your community and take one for the team by being a sober driver” —



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