Parties

Registering your party

Letting the police know of your party beforehand could be helpful if something goes wrong. Depending on other commitments and available resources, the police may:

  • Help remove gatecrashers by giving you a poster that indicates that your party is registered with the police
  • Tell you of relevant complaints on the phone instead of coming to the party
  • Tell your neighbours that you have notified the police and the party’s duration
  • Drive by to make sure everything is okay

     

    Registering your party will not automatically invite the police to your home. The police will not attend the registered party unless:

  • There is a request from either the party, a neighbour or a parent
  • It is in the public interest of maintaining order and safety.

    You can notify the police by:

  • Completing a WA Police Party Registration Form and submit it to your local police station 7 days before the party either in person or by email.

     

    The Registration Form is downloadable from Western Australia Police website and the information will only be used if the police needs to respond to an incident at that party. http://www.police.wa.gov.au/YOURSAFETY/PartySafety/tabid/1353/Default.aspx

    Remember to tell the Police if the party gets postponed, relocated or cancelled.

    Alcohol

    It is not illegal for someone under 18 to drink alcohol in a private home. If you are intending on serving alcohol to guests under 18, it would be wise to let their parent/guardians know that there will be alcohol at this party and have a responsible adult serving the alcohol as your parents/guardians can be sued for a breach of duty if something goes wrong.

    It is illegal to supply alcohol to, or obtain alcohol from a pub or liquor store for anyone under 18. This applies even if you’re under 18!

    It is also illegal for someone under 18 to consume alcohol:

  • at a licensed premises such as a pub, club;
  • at restaurant (unless you are with your parent/guardian an it is part of your meal); or
  • in a public place.

     

    Also, if you are under 18, it is illegal to obtain from licensed premises.

    Medical Emergencies

    If someone has passed out from taking drugs or having too much to drink, or if there is another medical emergency, you should call the ambulance on 000. 

    In the case of a drug overdose, and you don’t know whether the amount taken was damaging, you can ring Poisons Information on 131 126, anytime and anywhere in Australia for advice. Be aware that it takes a while for the symptoms of an overdose to appear, so even if the person appears to be all right, get help and advice.

    At the ambulance’s arrival, you should tell them:

  • how much the person has drunk; and
  • what substances they have taken

     

    The ambulance officers do not have to call the police unless:

  • there is a reasonable suspicion that the ambulance officers will be in danger;
  • you request that the police be contacted; or
  • Someone dies

    Noise Regulation

    The most common complaint from neighbours is the level of noise at parties. In Western Australia, it is an offence to create ‘unreasonable noise’, but its definition is left to the police. Factors such as time, location and volume will be critical.

    If your party is judged to be creating ‘unreasonable noise’, then the police can order a noise abatement direction to stop the noise and heavy fines may be applicable.

    In Western Australia, there are restrictions for the use of musical instruments and sound systems – common devices at parties. The restricted times are:

  • Monday to Saturday: 7pm to 7am
  • Sunday or Public Holiday: 7pm to 9am

     

    This does not limit when you can use such devices, but during these times you must ensure that the volume is low enough not to be heard in a habitable room of your neighbours.

    Injuries and Damage to Property

    Having a party is a lot of responsibility – you owe all your guests a duty of care, so make sure items that can injure your guests are set aside. If your guest is injured, they may be able to sue either you or your parents/guardian for negligence.

    It is also good to lock away items that are valuable, like LCD televisions or even mobile phones. Also, if one of your guests damages property (that is, outside your premises), then they will be liable under the law – regardless of how old they are.

    If however, it is found that they acted this way because of you or your parent’s breach of duty of care (eg. If you supplied alcohol to them) then you and your parents could be held responsible.

    For more information, see Law Topic: Being Sued

    Tips

    Planning is extremely important in having a successful party. Here are some common problems that arise at parties and remedies that can solve them:

    Gatecrashers and unwelcome guests

  • The police may be able to provide you with a poster that signifies that this is a police-registered party.
  • If it is possible, get some kind of security to prevent gatecrashers coming in.
  • Organise the venue so that there are only a small number of entrances and exits into the party.
  • Don’t send invitations via avenues where uninvited people can have easy access to, such as Facebook or SMS.
  • Don’t send open invitations and keep a guest list.
  • Be sure to specify the start and finish times on your invitation.
  • Have adult supervision at the venue that is proportionate to the guests you have invited.


    Alcohol

  • Decide early on whether the party will consume alcohol or not. Specify this clearly to your guests
  • Have plenty of food available, as food slows down alcohol absorption in the body. Stay clear of salty foods – which make people thirstier.
  • If you decide to have alcohol, make sure adequate non-alcoholic and low-alcoholic drinks are available.
  • Don’t have BYO and have one area serving all the alcohol. Make sure the area is run by a responsible adult.
  • Plan how your guests will leave your party. P plates cannot drive whilst intoxicated (their BAC is 0). Try to organise public transport, parent pickups, sleepovers or for someone who has not taken alcohol to carpool.

     

    For more tips on party planning visit:

  • Reach Out! at http://www.reachout.com.au/default.asp?ti=2602

     

    This page last updated September 2009

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