Too much booze ruining Torquay nightlife
A GRUESOME trail of thick blood, drunks vomiting on the street and a young woman passed out on the bench seat outside his damaged business.
These are the scenes which greeted Rolf Light after he was called to the Torquay Post Office late Saturday night. A drunken thug, shirtless and fresh from a stoush outside a nearby bar had been captured on CCTV using a closed fist to smash through the post office window.
Blood sprayed across the path as he walked away.
The senseless act could have cost him his life had it not been for quick-thinking guests across the road at Aquavue Café.
Owner Larry Burch told the Chronicle he was hosting a private event where luckily, many in attendance were trained in providing emergency assistance.
He said the injured male had been caught up in a brawl of up to 25 people at another location before he walked down the street and punched in the post office window.
The man was then seen staggering across the road where he fell and had to be helped up by his friends.
Initially, he fought off being laid down on the ground but he eventually gave in as nurses from the private party applied pressure cloths to his wounds.
"They prevented him from bleeding out," Mr Burch said
"That guy may well not be here now if it wasn't for the nurses at hand."
A Hervey Bay Police spokesman yesterday confirmed a male had been treated for a laceration which covered the length of his forearm and was taken to hospital.
He said investigations were continuing but no charges had yet been laid.
Mr Light said his business was several hundred dollars out of pocket after the third attack on the store this year but he's more upset about the level of intoxication he witnessed in the early hours.
"What I saw was nothing less than disgusting - one young lady passed out, people throwing up...
"It's not a good look for Hervey Bay."
Mr Burch felt the unfortunate issues in the Torquay area stemmed from two things - the presence of the region's only nightclub which was always going to attract hordes of young party goers and undesirables and the sale of cheap shots to young people by venues out to make money from pre-club fuelling.
He was disappointed the council had approved the nightclub in the first place given the problems of the past but said since it had, all business owners could hope for was a stronger police presence and monitoring by the liquor watchdog.
"I agree that we should have a nightclub but it should be in an industrial area," he said
"The people that we have come here have a couple of drinks and a good time - they don't want to have to deal with out-of-control juveniles.
"The solution is not allowing people to sell shots to young people.
"At the moment there are too many young people out of control...we need to look at why they are out of control and how did they get there?"
Smoke and Leather Nightclub owner Shaun Leather told the Chronicle the man allegedly responsible for the window smashing was banned from licenced venues under the liquor accord and had not been in his club.
Café Tapas owner Henrik Lin denied there was regular trouble with young drinkers.
He said they did sell shots but monitored consumption and used their judgment in deciding who could and couldn't be served.
Mr Burch would also like to see better care taken to keep the popular tourist precinct clean after Friday and Saturday nights.
"I came out and checked in the morning and there was still blood everywhere," he said
"I don't expect emergency services to clean up after events but there's got to be someone they can call.
"Everywhere else there is regulations about cleaning up blood but you can spill it on the street and nothing happens.
"This is an area where there's play equipment and families come in the day and I'd really like to see a system when someone can come in and fix these things."