THERE will be a changing of the guard on the Glitter Strip today, as Queensland schoolies make way for their southern counterparts.
Year 12 graduates from New South Wales and Victoria will start arriving on the Gold Coast to start their celebrations after the official week of schoolies wrapped up in Surfers Paradise this morning.
Police hope they will continue the good behaviour shown by the Queenslanders.
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“This year saw a significant drop in arrests across Schoolies Week, with 199 fewer total arrests than last year,” Gold Coast District Inspector Damien Crosby said.
“This is a clear result of effective policing strategies and strong collaboration between police and a range of organisations including the event organisers, government departments, the council, and volunteer agencies,” Inspector Crosby added.
Overnight police arrested three schoolies on three offences and 16 ‘toolies’ (non-schoolies) on 31 offences, including public nuisance and drug offences.
In total, 37 schoolies ended up on the other side of the law in the past week, on a total of 48 charges.
There were 81 non-schoolies arrested on 113 charges during the same period.
The Queensland Ambulance Service agreed that most of the schoolies had heeded warnings regarding the over consumption of alcohol.
A total of 66 patients were assessed by paramedics at the schoolies precinct on Friday night, with 5 transported to hospital.
“Predominately (we) treated intoxicated patients and a few minor traumas,” Justin Payne Special Events Coordinator Gold Coast said.
“Overall the schoolies experience was really positive for the Ambulance Service,” Mr Payne added.
“A majority of the people were just here to have a good time and were really happy to have the support that was here.”
An increased police presence will remain in the Surfers Paradise precinct throughout the next two weeks.
“The majority of interstate schoolies are over 18, which means our focus will shift towards the policing of licensed venues,” Inspector Crosby said.
“We want to remind our interstate visitors to do the right thing as there will be a strong police presence and anti-social behaviour and criminal activity will not be tolerated.”