Coffs has a ?cool? new year

By BELINDA SCOTT

COFFS HARBOUR police said New Year's Eve had been generally peaceful, with relatively few incidents.

A number of those involved warnings or cautions about alcohol in alcohol-free zones or to minors found drinking alcohol.

Senior Constable Scott Jackson from Coffs Harbour Highway Patrol said most drivers had been well-behaved.

The region's biggest crowds converged on Coffs Harbour's Jetty Foreshores, where fireworks, live entertainment and the Jetty Carnival kept the crowds amused.

Organiser John Logan estimated the total Jetty crowd at 10,000 people, including the crowd at the deep sea fishing club, the yacht club and the marina.

Mr Logan said considering the numbers involved, behaviour was pretty good for most of the night and he was 'pretty happy' with the event.

He said numbers had been slightly up on 2004 and families had seemed to arrive earlier but also leave earlier, while there had been queues of more than 30 minutes for some carnival rides, with the Hurricane and the Cyberparty earning top marks with young riders.

Mr Logan said he believed an awareness campaign was needed because later at night he had met people who still seemed unaware of the Jetty Foreshores' alcohol-free zone.

New Year's Eve revellers Daniel Wells and Ian Barton of Coffs Harbour gave their night the thumbs-up.

They danced and enjoyed the music at the Plantation Hotel, had a 'bit too much' to drink, watched the fireworks, talked to their friends and slept in their car. However police are making inquiries about a number of assaults on revellers during the evening.

A 22-year-old Queensland man and a 17-year-old boy were taken to hospital with lacerations and bruises following assaults at Coffs Harbour and Sawtell, while another 17-year-old and a 23-year-old Queensland man were less seriously injured in the same incidents and a 13-year-old girl, a 22-year-old woman and a 43-year-old man received bruises and scratches in two other New Year's Eve incidents.



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