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Blow into the bag if you want to get served

Ropewalks bouncers to be issued with breathalysers as city's drunks bill hits £204m

Published on October 23rd 2014.

Blow into the bag if you want to get served

BOOZED-UP revellers in Liverpool could soon be asked to take a deep breath and blow into a bag of they want to carry on drinking.

The city council is today launching a new campaign called “Say No to Drunks” which aims to stop people who have had a few too many from having any more. 

Doormen on bars and clubs in the Ropewalks area are being issued with breathalysers as part of the drive, launched by Citysafe, which aims to remind businesses that it is illegal to serve anybody who appears to be drunk.  

Bar staff who carry on pouring face a £90 fixed penalty notice or a £1,000 fine on court on conviction. Premises could also have their licence reviewed.

According to the council, "the breathalysers will only be used sparingly by bar staff on customers  who they believe have had too  much to drink and are one of a number of tests which can be applied for judging whether they should be served".



Around 25 bars and clubs in Ropewalks have agreed to take part in the pilot scheme. 

Councillor Roz Gladden Deputy Mayor and Cabinet member for social care and health said: “Alcohol misuse costs Liverpool an estimated £204 million per year.

 “Unfortunately, you can see people worse for wear through drink in Liverpool’s night time economy. We know that people ‘preloading’ - drinking before they go out- significantly adds to this problem.

It is important that we try and reduce the levels of drunkenness, not only for the sake of individuals’ health but because of the impact it has on A&E departments  in hospitals across the city at weekends in particular.

Police Superintendent Mark Wiggins added: "We know that around 50 per cent of all violent crimes committed are alcohol related and that if you drink at home, then go out, you are more likely to be involved in violence, either as a victim or as an offender.

"This pilot scheme isn't aimed at those who drink responsibly - it's there to help identify the small minority of people who have had too much alcohol and could end up being a danger either to themselves or others. 

 "Liverpool's night time economy is rightly famous and the vast majority of people have a safe and enjoyable night out in our city."

Posters featuring characters such as “Bevvied up Bev" and "Tanked up Tommy" will be prominently displayed.

Meanwhile, more timid bar staff will receive assertivness training from the council's alcohol and tobacco unit in order that they might better break the news to smashed customers that there won't be one for the road.

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6 comments so far, continue the conversation, write a comment.

AnonymousOctober 24th 2014.

This campaign has a major flaw. If it's the responsibility of the bars to make sure people aren't too drunk, then they should breathalyse them on the way out, then keep them in until they are sober enough.

1 Response: Reply To This...
John BradleyOctober 24th 2014.

It is actually illegal to buy drinks when drunk and to serve someone who is drunk. So it is the bar staff who should have the testers.

AnonymousOctober 24th 2014.

People like getting drunk, leave them to it. you don't need breathalysers to tell if someone's had to many.

Phillip LawlerOctober 24th 2014.

Drunk people are clearly served in the city centre so the 'crime' is happening a multitude of times on any one night. How is this going to be policed? If you are a bar man on minimum wage are you going to be confrontational with a breathaliser to an angry punter? Bouncers already clearly know when someone is too smashed to get into their establishment. They don't let them in the first place as it is bad for business. If the breathalisers are used they will be used sporadically to pay lip service to the scheme. No club is going to systematically breathalise an entire queue of a few hundred people lined down the block. People will be allowed to get pleasantly drunk as long as they do not cause trouble. The idea is meant well but will have plenty of practical difficulties. Imagine telling tourists about the breathaliser scheme and explaining rules and limits to them? Quite off-putting to one of our biggest economies.

AnonymousOctober 24th 2014.

I know of some places that would be empty if this was taken seriously. Medication being just one.

1 Response: Reply To This...
E. BowlerOctober 25th 2014.

Surely with a name like 'Medication' the tests should be for drugs!

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