Brewery visitors urged to avoid driving

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POLICE are warning microbrewery patrons to watch their alcohol intake after they caught a number of brewery visitors driving close to the legal limit over the long weekend.

Operation Regal took place over the Queens’ Birthday long weekend, with an increased police presence working across the state to try and catch drink drivers.

Microbreweries have grown in popularity in recent years, with a number of popular spots open across Frankston and the Mornington Peninsula. Frankston Police Senior Sergeant Phil Hulley said that visitors to the breweries might not be aware that drinks at the venues often contain a very high percentage of alcohol.

“At these boutique breweries, one beer is a lot stronger than a regular beer usually is. A drink or two at these places might seem innocuous, but it might just push you over the limit,” he said.

“A lot of times we pull over people who had been drinking the night before. In the morning we pulled over a woman who was taking her kids to the pictures, and she blew 0.047. There are police out in the morning, and if you’re even just dropping your kids off at football you still might be over. 

“These are not your standard glasses of beer. You shouldn’t chance it and should always take a taxi or an uber. Losing your licence has a massively negative effect on your life, so don’t risk it.”

More than 8976 traffic offences were detected during Operation Regal. Road Policing Command Assistant Commissioner Stephen Leane said that despite an increased police presence, they still need drivers to do their bit by making the right decisions.

“When comparing to last year’s Operation Regal, Victoria Police completed double the amount of drug tests and caught more people both drink driving and speeding,” Assistant Commissioner Leane said.

“We are doing as much as we can to encourage the community to change their behaviour, but need everyone on board to make a difference on our roads.”

The state’s road toll is up 54.2 per cent this year. It stands at 148 as of 13 June, compared to 96 at the same time last year.

First published in the Frankston Times – 17 June 2019

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