Cops cool with ‘packed’ Coast beach party
LOCAL residents are outraged about a lack of social distancing at a Coolangatta beach party but the city's top cop says revellers weren't breaching COVID rules.
Photos have emerged showing a group of party people holding a gathering at Froggies Beach on Christmas night.
The images show about 70 in two groups on the beach, as well as a DJ set up.
Coolangatta resident Jim Jackson, who reported the party to police, said it was not the first gathering of that kind at the beach in recent months.
"There was no social distancing in the dance area and the crowd got much bigger later in the night with people streaming in and large amounts of alcohol being consumed," he claimed.
"Around 1am there were a lot of drunk people heading home and single females who were very intoxicated and I thought to be very vulnerable."
Mr Jackson, an Emeritus Professor in Law, said as a resident living nearby the beach, he was concerned about health, safety and security as a result of the party.
"There are the issues around COVID and safety and security," he said.
"There are no toilets there and no security, so if a bundle of bikies turned up or something all hell could have broken loose."
But Gold Coast police Chief Superintendent Mark Wheeler said there were no COVID-related breaches as result of the gathering, which had no more than 70 people attend.
"Officers actively patrol this area and to date, there have been no penalty infringement notices issued (as a result of beach parties at Froggies)," he said.
Chief Supt. Wheeler said police were called about 6.30pm on Christmas night after noise complaints.
He noted Queenslanders were still able to catch public transport, attending pubs and clubs and sporting events in numbers greater than those who attended the party.
Directions from the Chief Health Officer (CHO) also allow 100 people to attend gatherings in public outdoor spaces and areas.
"We have to remember some of these gatherings happen organically. There were no breaches of any CHO directions but we encourage people who have concerns about parties of this nature to contact the police," he said.
"We do remind everyone to be COVID-safe, socially distance, wherever possible, maintain good hygiene practices …
"If you do get sick, get tested and ensure you register your details if you attend a venue."
Mr Jackson said he also contacted a number of MPs and Gold Coast Mayor Tom Tate about the party but had not yet received a response.
Originally published as Cops cool with 'packed' Coast beach party