VISITORS and locals are asked to celebrate in the true Australian spirit of mateship ahead of the launch of Operation Australia for the national holiday.
Police have launched Operation Australia to oversee up to half-a-million people that are expected to join in the celebrations this Australia Day (Friday 26 January 2018). The operation will consist of general duties officers from multiple local area commands, along with specialist police, that will be deployed throughout Sydney CBD, the foreshore areas and across NSW to conduct high-visibility patrols.
Operation Commander, Assistant Commissioner Karen Webb, said big crowds are expected to join in the various events throughout the state and police will be there to ensure you are able to do this safely.
“Uniformed and plain-clothes police will be patrolling the streets, and although we are there for your safety, we ask you take responsibility and drink in moderation. Look after your mates. Alcohol can impair your judgement and you can find yourself a victim of crime or before the courts, we don’t want either of these for you or your friends.
“Additional police will be deployed on the ground, in the air, and on the water to focus on anti-social behaviour and alcohol-related crime. People are urged to comply with all directions of police.
The Sydney Harbour is a popular destination to spend Australia Day, police are reminding skippers of their responsibility in complying with the maritime laws, and have all the required safety equipment – most importantly, lifejackets – on board the vessel.
Officers from the Marine Area Command will be conducting drug and alcohol testing on the water, so remember, the same rule applies to as if you were driving a vehicle, it is a 0.05 alcohol limit.
For anyone heading out on the water, check the weather conditions prior to your departure, exclusion zones and movement times apply. Please visit www.maritime.nsw.gov.au/ for further details.
There will be road closures in place – particularly within the Sydney CBD – throughout the day, so members of the public are asked to leave the car at home and utilise public transport.
A reminder for people who insist on driving to plan your trip via livetraffic.com, and allow extra time and expect delays.
If you are planning to attend an event, remember to check the conditions of entry, especially relating to alcohol-free zones.
Members of the public should also remember that glass bottles are prohibited in some of the event areas so ensure you check conditions of entry.
For details about what’s happening in your area and further event-related information, visit the official Australia Day website: http://www.australiaday.com.au/
Operation Safe Return, the Australia Day road safety enforcement campaign, starts at 0001 hours today (Thursday 25 January 2018) and concludes at 2359 hours on Sunday 28 January 2018.
Double demerits will be in force throughout the period for speeding, seatbelt, mobile phone and motorcycle helmet offences.
“In light of recent tragedies on our roads, we are urging people to take care on our roads. There have been far too many lives lost in the short time of 2018. The message is simple, don’t drink or take drugs and get behind the wheel.
“Officers from the Traffic & Highway Patrol Command will be conducting extensive patrols and will take action where necessary,” Assistant Commissioner Karen Webb said.
A comprehensive Australia Day transport guide – with information for travel to and from events from 7am – is available by visiting www.transportnsw.info.