Gold Coast schoolies arrests down on last year, amid wild weatherBy Russell Varley, Sunday November 17, 2013 - 11:40 EDT
Police have arrested just nine schoolies on their first night of celebrations on the Gold Coast, less than half the number arrested at the same time last year.
More than 50 non-schoolies were also arrested.
for the opening night of the annual week-long party.
Organisers were forced to evacuate the main beach venue, called the Schoolies Hub, when a thunderstorm swept the region.
But the entertainment restarted once the storm had passed and the wild weather failed to damped the revellers' party spirit.
"They didn't particularly like having their party dampened on but they're just as loud as always and just as numerous as always and they all seemed to be having a really good time," said Angela Driscoll from the Chill Out Zone.
Nine schoolies were arrested overnight, mainly for public nuisance offences. Three of the charges were minor drug matters
Last year, 20 schoolies were arrested on the opening night.
Officers also issued nine on the spot fines for drinking in a public place compared to 47 last year.
Ollie Nelson from the Red Frogs support group says it appears seminars for graduates during the year have paid off.
"It's great to actually see that being taken on board to those sessions that are done in schools are so effective," he said.
The celebrations continue tonight.
© ABC 2013
More breaking news
A gusty cold front has brought gusty winds and showers to southern SA, western VIC and southern NSW.
Northern Australia has an above average chance of experiencing an early start to the wet season according to data released today by the Bureau of Meteorology.
It's going to be a mixed bag of weather around the country on Saturday as voters head out to decide who next we can make fun of in cartoons, watch being interviewed on a brisk dawn walk, or hear them say 'jobs and growth' again and again.