People to be breathalysed going in to Cambridge pubs and clubs in bid to stop binge drinking


Breathalyser. - Credit: Archant

Revellers may be forced to take a breath test to get into pubs and nightclubs as part of a pilot scheme to combat binge drinking.

The breathalyser kits will be issued to security staff at busy Cambridge venues, who will be able to request a breath test from people who seem excessively drunk.

Twenty devices will be made available to 20 venues, making it harder for intoxicated members of the public to choose a venue to avoid being tested.

The breathalysers will not be used as a requirement to entry, but security staff, who often are the victims of drunk aggressive behaviour, will be able to use them to show why heavily intoxicated people are being denied entry.

Funding for the trail has been provided by Police and Crime Commissioner Sir Graham Bright.

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He said: “The trend these days is for people to ‘preload’ with alcohol at home before heading out.

“The result of this can be that people are very drunk towards the end of the evening putting themselves and others at risk.

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“I want people to enjoy a night out but to do so responsibly. Increasingly the police and the health service are required to deal with the consequences of excessive drinking and I hope this scheme will help reduce the number of people who get into trouble as a result of their drinking.”

Trials in other parts of the country have been found to reduce the number of disorders at venues by about a third.

The campaign is backed by Cambridgeshire County Council, which says it is “very concerned” about excessive drinking.

Joseph Keegan, alcohol strategic lead at Cambridgeshire County Council, says: “The council is very concerned about people putting their health at risk by drinking to excess at home before they leave for the city centre.

“Each person who is turned away from a venue will be offered a drink scratch card which will give them information about their drinking risk levels and advice on cutting down on alcohol use.

“The council supports this campaign as it helps to promote messages around good health as well as reducing the risk of violent crime.”

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