Lockout Laws in Fortitude Valley

On July 1, 2016, a new lockout law was implemented that further restricted the drinking habits of Queenslanders. Spearheaded by Australian Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk, the law mandated earlier times for last drinks (2:00am) for pubs and clubs outside the safe night precincts, last drinks call of 3:00am for nightclubs within safe night precincts, and alcohol sellers would no longer be allowed to sell alcoholic drinks after midnight. Nightclub visitors have 30 minutes after the last drinks are called to finish their drink. Venues outside and inside of the safe night precincts can remain open after 2:00am and 3:00am respectively to serve food, non-alcoholic drinks, and provide entertainment. Further restrictions are due in February 2017.

Under the new lockout restrictions to be implemented in the next couple of months, nobody will be allowed to enter/re-enter any premises within designated safe night precincts during the lockout hours. Inside, the venue will stop serving alcohol at the time mandated for that venue. Visitors may enter after 3:00am to consume food and non-alcoholic drinks.

In Fortitude Valley, lockout hours will be between 1:00am and 3:00am. The new law replaces the 3:00am lockout and 5:00am closing times introduced in Queensland in 2005.

Pubs in Queensland will not be able to serve alcohol after 2:00am, but those within the dedicated safe night precincts can shut at 3:00am. The 15 safe night precincts are as follows:

Airlie Beach
Brisbane CBD
Broadbeach CBD
Bundaberg CBD
Fortitude Valley CBD
Ipswich CBD
Mackay CBD
Rockhampton CBD
Sunshine Coast (Caloundra, Maroochydore and Mooloolaba)
Surfers Paradise CBD
Townsville CBD

Exempt from the law are BYO restaurants, casinos, airport terminals, and the residential accommodation sections of licensed premises. Failure to comply with the lockout laws could result in up to $12,190 in penalties for licensees or permit holders.

Tower Ad

The laws come as an attempt to regulate Australians’ drinking habits, protect the community and hospitality workers, and avoid alcohol-fueled violence, especially at night.

Nightclub operators have reported a 20 per cent drop in business since the law was first implemented in July. Weekends were no better. Casual staff in nightclubs saw a two-hour reduction in their working hours, and consequently, their take home pay.

Read More