10 months ago

Selwyn Times: June 20, 2017

4 Tuesday

4 Tuesday June 20 2017 Latest Christchurch news at www. .kiwi News SELWYN TIMES Changing attitudes lower the number • By Bridget Rutherford DRINK DRIVING charges have almost halved in Canterbury over the past decade – a shift police say is down to changed attitudes. The latest drink driving figures show the number of people charged for driving under the influence of alcohol in Canterbury was 1658 last year, compared with 2543 in 2007. Of those, 1604 were convicted last year. There were 2433 convictions in 2007. Nationally, the number has dropped from 27,328 a decade ago, compared with 16,304 in 2016. Canterbury road policing manager Inspector Al Stewart (left) said police were encouraged by the downward trend. “The trauma and grief caused by an alcohol-related serious crash is massive, so less people affected by alcohol on our roads make them safer for all road users and reduces harm in our communities.” He said changing public attitudes to drink driving was the reason for the decline. It KEEPING OTHERS SAFE: Famous Grouse manager Will Stock with one of the hotel’s courtesy vans. Courtesy vans have been a popular option with pubs to help combat drink-driving. PHOTO: MARTIN HUNTER was not seen as acceptable any more, he said. Inspector Stewart said police had made strategic efforts targeting alcohol harm, especially on the roads. “This has been supported by the lower drink driving limits which have encouraged people to think about their drinking behaviour and plan to make it home safely.” The breath-alcohol limit was lowered from 400mcg/L to 250mcg/L in December, 2014. But the limit that triggered prosecution at court was 400mcg/L. The latest stats did not include the number of people given an infringement notice for driving over the 250mcg/L limit since it changed. But in 2014, the number of people charged in Canterbury was 2235, before dropping to 1852 in 2015 and again in 2016. Bars and pubs have noticed people are more aware of what they were drinking, with many patrons now choosing light beers come see the all blacks take on the on our BIG lions screens. BY THE NUMBERS Number of drink driving charges in Canterbury in the last five years: 2012: 2900 2013: 2472 2014: 2235 2015: 1852 2016: 1658 Number of convictions in Canterbury in the last five years: 2012: 2795 2013: 2392 2014: 2187 2015: 1796 2016: 1604 and wines. The Lincoln Club, which operates the Famous Grouse Hotel, has seen a drop-off in patronage since the drink driving limits were lowered. President Lynn Townsend said people were choosing to drink at home. Mr Townsend said the hotel had two courtesy vans to get people home safely and a range of low alcohol beers. He said the low alcohol beverages available gives people the option of having a couple of beers without having too much. Hotel manager Will Stock said the vans are used regularly by patrons in the evening. Saturday 24 June • Indoor outdoor & mezzanine dining areas • Large sheltered & sunny courtyard • Extensive lunch & evening menu selection to suit everybody’s tastes • Large range of wine, tap & bottled beers • 2x courtesy vans available Silver Dollar – the bar that supports your community 871 Jones Rd, Rolleston | Ph 347 0386 | Specialists @ Individuality • Focus on sustainability • Award winning family owned business • Proven reputation of quality • Full architectural design package NATIONAL “HOY” WINNER plus GOLD RESERVE 2016 View our display home Phone Jesse 021 701 265 or visit Canterbury

SELWYN TIMES Latest Christchurch news at www. .kiwi Tuesday June 20 2017 5 of drink drivers He said regulars at the pub, use the vans often. Southbridge Hotel manager Gagandeep Vashisht said the hotel has courtesy vans and a proper menu of food available to prevent drink driving. He said the hotel had not have a loss of patronage due to more people at home due to the hotel providing live bands. Sheffield Hotel owner Desrae Johnson said the attitude against drink driving had greatly improved and it uses the courtesy van a lot more than in the past. “We have a full restaurant here, we have an extensive bar and menu that takes priority . . . we have a low alcohol on tap,we have low alcohol in the fridge and we have non alcohol beverages available all the time,” she said. The statistics showed in Christchurch, 1562 appeared in the district court charged with drink driving last year. It was 2080 in 2007. In comparison, last year 78 people appeared in the Ashburton District Court charged with drink driving, and 170 in Timaru. In 2007, people aged 19-yearsold and under had the most convictions for drink driving in Christchurch with 473. But last year, the number of under-19s convicted had dropped to 154, and the 20-24-year-old bracket was the highest with 323 convictions. That was followed by the 25-29 age bracket with 274. Inspector Stewart said police and communities could not be complacent. People needed to continue to have “hard conversations” with family members, whatever their age, if they were putting themselves and others at risk by drink NEW NORMAL: More drivers are drinking low alcohol beer and non-alcohol wines. driving, he said. “Police will continue to enforce alcohol-related offending at a high level to reduce the trauma and family harm that results from it.” While the number of people charged with drink driving in Canterbury has almost halved in the last 10 years – changing public attitude has not deterred others •A 38-year-old woman was caught drink driving more than four times the legal limit with her two young children in Rolleston. Melanie Susan Trebilco pleaded guilty to a charge of driving with excess blood alcohol after being caught at a random stop on Tennyson St on December 9. Her alcohol level was 1157mcg/L. Police said she refused to let officers escort her three and nine-year-old children, as the car did not have car seats. She was disqualified from driving for eight months, and fined $1000 in January. •On the same day, another Rolleston mother recorded a reading of 696mcg/L when stopped in Faringdon subdivision with her four-year-old child in the car. The 35-yearold was pulled over after failing to stop at a stop sign. •Well-known race car driver and businessman Paul Kelly was caught by police doing a burnout in a classic car outside a Christmas party while under the influence. The 47-year-old had been drinking for the day on December 16 and blew 853mcg/L. He was disqualified from driving for six months and fined $600. • Sarah Jane Arrow was on a zero-alcohol licence when she got behind the wheel after drinking last year. The 45-year-old was driving along Main Rd, four times the legal limit, and failed to take a bend, crashing into pedestrian Ben Appleton. He flew 2m onto the rocks below, suffering two broken legs, and a fractured skull and spine. In September Arrow was sentenced to two-and-a-half years in prison and was banned from driving for the rest of her life. She was ordered to pay $2500 in reparation to Mr Appleton. It was her fourth conviction for drink driving. Landscape Construction and Garden Maintenance 55 Faringdon Boulevard, Rolleston 284-286 Lincoln Road, Addington Open 7 days - 9am till Late Bookings recommended, Ph: 03 260 0866 HAVE YOU BEEN TO SEE US LATELY? Call in today for a full supply of fresh fruit and vegetables. OPEN 7 DAYS Phone 349 5952 Cnr Springs Rd & Marshs Rd, Prebbleton (next to Milanese Restaurant) You can have your gardens, trees, shrubs, plants and lawns maintained to look their best all year round, for a great price. 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Come and see why we love the life at Summerset Morning Tea & Tour Wednesday 21 June, 10:30am Summerset at Wigram 135 Awatea Road, Christchurch Contact Anne Walker on 03 741 0872 or 022 639 2341 She says that living at Summerset has given her a great sense of relief, “Now I can relax.” Love the life SUM0545_9x8