It’s that time of the year again, where Year 12 graduates will be flocking to scenic destinations for Schoolies week, to celebrate the completion of twelve years of education.
Queensland’s portion of this year’s annual event will run from Saturday, November 19 through to Saturday, November 26, with many graduates expected to be travelling to Cooloola Recreational Park.
In an effort to create a safe environment for schoolies, police will be focussing on surrounding locations throughout this period including Noosa, Teewah Beach, Double Island Point, Rainbow Beach and Inskip Point.
Highway Patrol Officers from Gympie, Maryborough, Bundaberg and well as officers from Rainbow Beach, Tin Can Bay, Wide Bay Tactical Crime Squad and officers from Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service will be joining forces to address road safety and behaviour.
Inspector Brad Inskip of the Gympie Patrol Group said Police will be monitoring the areas closely to ensure schoolies celebrate safely.
“Police will have a high visibility and high volume enforcement strategy,” he said.
“This includes high visibility patrols targeting reckless, unsafe, and irresponsible driving practices on the beaches, road network, tracks or in the campgrounds, whilst also targeting antisocial behaviour from campers involved in beach parties and the use of fireworks.”
Police presence will include mobile and stationary patrols on Rainbow Beach itself as well as Freshwater Road which is used at high tide.
Patrols will also span across the road network around Tin Can Bay, Rainbow Beach and Inskip Avenue.
Stationary and mobile driver units will be onsite testing for drugs and alcohol, also covering the beaches from Rainbow Beach to Double Island Point and south to Teewah Village.
Officer in Charge of Highway Patrol Gympie, Sergeant Chris Watson, touched on the importance of celebrating safely.
“While we recognise it’s important for schoolies to celebrate the end of twelve years of schooling, we urge them to do it safely; not only for themselves, but also considering their actions could influence others,” he said.
“Any dangerous or careless activities will not be tolerated.”
Schoolies heading to the Cooloola Recreational Park are reminded that all road rules apply on beaches and our officers will be patrolling, taking a zero-tolerance approach to any unsafe beach driving and antisocial behaviour observed.
Drivers can expect to see police anywhere, anytime.