Picture: Ben Crabtree/The West Australian

The mayor of Stirling has vowed that council rangers will fine anyone caught drinking at Scarborough beachfront after the first warm weekend of the season was marred by drunken violence.

David Boothman said that more than 10,000 people flocked to the popular beach as the temperature soared to 35C.

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There were a number of fights, which started with two teenage girls brawling about 2.30pm on Monday and flared again about 5.30pm near the amphitheatre.

Cr Boothman described the behaviour as reprehensible, saying a small minority destroyed the atmosphere for other beachgoers. He said authorities had to think smarter to prevent a repeat.

"As soon as people start coming down the beach, bringing alcohol and all that, jump on them there, give them infringements, seize the alcohol and hopefully you will actually nip it in the bud," he said.

"Then you don't get the problems later on with inebriated people causing great problems.

"During summer our rangers will be on the beach and they will be handing out infringements for littering and if people are going to take alcohol and drink it, they will get infringements."

Rangers can issue $125 fines for people caught drinking in public but Cr Boothman said staff could not be placed at personal risk by confronting big, hostile crowds.

"Once you have 10,000 people down here who are sitting around in large groups, it's very intimidating for one person to walk in and tell people they shouldn't be drinking," he said.

Five officers were patrolling the beach on Monday, which acting Supt. Danny Mulligan described as a big investment.

Police had not issued any liquor infringements but acting Supt. Mulligan said police did have operations planned to target people who took alcohol to the beach.

Police Minister Liza Harvey said that Scarborough police were well resourced and she was not in favour of a permanent police post.

The West Australian

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