Preventing Intoxication

Responsible Service of AlcoholAs a bar attendant, do you know how to prevent intoxication and promote responsible service of alcohol? It is the responsibility of yourself and the licensee to prevent intoxication. But how do you really prevent intoxication? There are steps that will assist you and the licensee.

There are steps and procedures that can be put in place to ensure intoxication slow down and to a minimum. These include:

  • Promote low-alcohol content beverages.

  • Promote food accompaniments.

  • Wait for the patron to reorder, do not automatically consider that they want a refill or another drink.

  • Slow down service, actively serve other customers and clean, if you appear busy – they will be less likely to reorder.

  • Use and point to the relevant signs outlining yours and the licensee’s legal responsibilities.

  • Alert other staff members of the patron showing signs of intoxication.

  • Serve water together with drinks.

  • Talk to patrons to gauge their intoxication level.

But what do you do if a patron becomes intoxicated? It is against the law to serve an intoxicated person, therefore, if there is ‘reasonable’ belief that a person is intoxicated – they should be refused service and all staff should be notified.

How to refuse service?

  • Politely inform them that they will no longer be served alcohol.

  • Repeat to them that the law prohibits you to serve them further alcohol.

  • Notify your manager and security. Also, notify other staff members so that the patron cannot be served by any staff.

  • Ensure before you refuse the patron service that they are not disabled, and that is the reason as to why they are showing signs of intoxication.

It is your responsibility as an attendant, licensee or manager to ensure that responsible service of alcohol laws and regulations are adhered to, including refusing service to intoxicated persons. If a person appears to be intoxicated, follow the above prescribed steps to be sure that you are adhering to your responsibilities, or you may be up for a $4000 fine for selling liquor to an intoxicated person.

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