Victoria police have released a statement today, declaring they will have a ’round the clock presence at Rainbow Serpent Festival this year.’
The statement made it clear that the reigns will be tightened at the festival, with police unwilling to see a return to lasts year’s serious incidents which included the tragic death of a young man.
The headline ‘No Pot at the end of the Rainbow Serpent Festival’ was followed by a clear message (or threat, depending on how you read it) to this year’s festival participants: ‘Police will have a zero tolerance for illegal activity,’ it said.
Ballarat’s Local Area Commander, Inspector Dan Davison, gave the impression of a caring police presence when he talked about watching out for your mates, drinking enough water, getting enough sleep and specifically mentioned safety concerns around drink and drug driving.
‘Police have had significant concerns regarding the behaviour of drivers linked to attending the Rainbow Serpent Festival,’ said Inspector Davison.
“Last year, one in every eight drivers tested for drugs returned a positive result. These results demonstrate the massive risk posed to other road users for the duration of the festival’ he said.
“Drink and drug driving puts the entire community at risk and anyone engaging in this behaviour will be caught.
Unfortunately, the tone underscoring police communications may take away from the degree of cooperation needed for punters to heed the reasonable safety message. We here at Dreamland are 100% with health and safety at events, but believe this method of subtle threats only weakens an intention which, well, may or may not be pure.