London clubbers to be breathalysed before entry

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  • The latest initiative by the Metropolitan Police seeks to prevent "pre-loading" and reduce violence at nightclubs.
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  • London clubbers may have to face a breathalyser test in order to gain entry to nightclubs. The program, a new pilot project from the Metropolitan police, was originally tested at six nightclubs in Croydon, according to the Evening Standard. The policy allows door staff to test people who appear intoxicated. And anyone who blows "positive"—which means twice the legal blood-alcohol limit for driving—will be barred from entry. The measure is meant to prevent what police term excessive "pre-loading," where "young people get drunk on cheap drinks before going out," and to curb what they see as an increase in nightclub-related violence. The news comes as the latest in a series of police actions towards the city's clubbing scene, including last year's controversy surrounding fabric, where police forced them to adapt a policy that will include using sniffer dogs at entry points. "The breathalyser helps to reduce the number of arguments when door staff refuse entry to someone who is intoxicated," says Chief Inspector Gary Taylor. "In the past door staff would get involved in long arguments with people who were refused entry. People who were arguing with staff were more likely to accept the results of the breathalyser." A similar policy is reportedly already in place in Norwich. Following the successful Croydon test run, the breathalyser program is set to be rolled out more comprehensively across six London boroughs in the near future.