Tough alcohol bans hit Pilbara mining towns

Tough new restrictions on alcohol sales in Pilbara mining towns will come into force early next month.

The West Australian reports under new laws hotels, taverns, and clubs in the Pilbara can only sell alcohol from 11am-8pm Monday to Saturday, and most bottle shops won't be able to sell takeaway alcohol on Sundays.

The restrictions will affect most Pilbara towns, including Newman, Karratha, Port Hedland, Tom Price, and surrounding communities.

According to The West Australian the director of liquor licencing has also enforced rules to stop the sale of:

• Containers with more than two litres of liquor with an alcohol content of six per cent or more (cask wine)
• Bottles of beer 750ml or larger, except in Hedland
• Containers with a litre or more of fortified wine, except in Wickham

PerthNow reports the Pilbara-wide rules were introduced to stop people traveling to different towns to source alcohol.

But according to PerthNow the Australian Hotels Association and Rio Tinto have spoken out against the ban.

The AHA has argued the bans will affect hospitality and tourism in the Pilbara, and Rio has expressed concern over a "one size fits all" approach to regulation that could impinge on the recreation time of its workers.

According to ABC News Professor Mike Daube from Curtin University said the cutbacks would be beneficial to Pilbara towns.

"I think what we're seeing is a good package," he said.

"It's a response to a cry for help from the community, and I think it will reduce alcohol problems in the Pilbara."

Image: Darwin Bell/Flickr

To keep up to date with Australian Mining, subscribe to our free email newsletters delivered straight to your inbox. Click here.