Beer can ban lifted at Adelaide Oval

·2-min read

Adelaide Oval has won a controversial bid to sell beer in cans despite concerns it could put the safety of workers, patrons and police at risk.

The Stadium Management Authority said it had been granted a change to its liquor licence which previously allowed it to only serve beer in plastic cups.

It plans to introduce the change, which comes with some provisions, in time for the local football finals later this year.

In granting the licence variation, Liquor and Gambling Commission Dini Soulio said he took into account the historically low number of alcohol-related incidents involving aluminium cans at SA sporting venues.

He said police had noted two, one in 1971 and the other in 1989.

"These incidents occurred a significantly long time ago and the current safety, service and monitoring arrangements in place at the oval are significantly different to what was in place back when these incidents occurred," he said in his decision.

Under the change, the oval management will be required to make announcements over its large TV screens warning patrons against using cans as projectiles and warning that such action could result in a ban from the venue for up to two years.

Police initially opposed the change but withdrew their objections when stadium officials agreed to a review after 12 months.

But unions and crossbench MPs in state parliament have criticised the move, arguing it would have serious implications for patrons and workers.

SA Unions secretary Dale Beasley said examples abounded of spectators, police and workers being injured by thrown cans, including during a recent trial of can sales at stadiums in Victoria.

"Adelaide Oval must ensure workers and spectators are safe from the risk of tins being used as projectiles," Mr Beasley said.

"If they can't do that then the sale of drinks in tins shouldn't proceed."

SA-BEST upper house MP Frank Pangallo said the move to cans was both irresponsible and dangerous.

"The whole idea of again selling beer in cans at Adelaide Oval defies logic. It's a crazy idea," he said.

"A full can of beer thrown in anger or frustration by a drunken spectator is a potentially deadly missile with the ability to cause serious harm."

The Stadium Management Authority said Adelaide Oval would continue to prioritise the safety of all patrons, staff, players and police.

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