Queenslanders drink more alcohol in one sitting than the average Australian, and a quarter of Sunshine State drinkers wake up after a session unable to remember the previous night.
Sixty-five per cent of Queenslanders consume three or more drinks in a typical sitting, compared to the national average of 50 per cent.
The Queensland findings were released on Thursday, and were part of a broader national survey funded by the Foundation for Alcohol Research and Education, a charity that aims to prevent alcohol harm.
The survey also showed that the average Queensland drinker spends $32.68 each week on booze, and 57 per cent of drinkers “preload” before going out to licensed venues.
However, Queenslanders appear to acknowledge that they need to change their ways, with 76 per cent saying Australia has a problem with excess drinking or alcohol abuse.
On Thursday morning, an alliance of Queensland health organisations, named the Queensland Coalition for Action on Alcohol, was officially launched.
QCAA chair Anthony Lynham, a prominent facial reconstruction surgeon who encounters people with alcohol-related injuries every week, said the survey figures were alarming.
“In this state we have alcohol harms spiralling out of control and we also have an overwhelming majority of Queenslanders concerned about the problem and calling on the government to step up and address the problem,” Dr Lynham said.
The FARE survey also found that 79 per cent of Queensland respondents believed pubs, clubs and bars should close by 3am.
In September, an expert panel commissioned by state Attorney-General Jarrod Bleijie recommended a 3am late-night trading curfew. However, the government is yet to decide whether to implement the proposal.
The 3am shutdown plan was dismissed by the Valley Liquor Accord chairman Nick Braban, who said it would cause “absolute carnage, mayhem”.
“There’s no public transport running at that time, the taxis couldn’t deal with the sudden demand,” he told Fairfax Media in September.
“The current system works really well in that it staggers people leaving these precincts. And that allows services to deal with them effectively.”
This article first appeared ‘Brisbane Times’ on 28 November 2013.