Millions of revellers rang in 2014 without incident, but several vicious attacks across Australia marred NYE celebrations.
One man died and two others are in critical condition after violence marred New Year’s Eve celebrations in Western Australia, NSW and South Australia.
While millions of people rang in 2014 without incident, there were ugly scenes in Victoria, where revellers clashed with police at an out-of-control Melbourne party.
In the most serious incident in the country, a man died after a fight at a beach party on tiny Wedge Island off the West Australian coast.
Police say the man died after being assaulted just before 1.30am on the 400-metre-long island, 160 kilometres north of Perth.
Two other people were injured, with one flown by rescue helicopter to Royal Perth Hospital.
In the state’s southwest, a woman died after a suspected drug overdose, WA police said.
In Sydney, an estimated two million people lined Sydney Harbour to view the 12-minute midnight fireworks display, with pyrotechnic displays also going off at 9pm and 10.30pm.
But in nearby Kings Cross, 18-year-old Daniel Christie was left in critical condition after being hit in an allegedly unprovoked attack about 9pm.
He is fighting for life at St Vincent’s Hospital.
His alleged attacker, Shaun McNeil, 25, was refused bail on Wednesday, with a Sydney court told Mr Christie was shielding others when he was struck.
In Adelaide, a 63-year-old man was left in critical condition after being stabbed several times.
Police charged a 55-year-old woman with attempted murder over the stabbing.
More than 100 people were arrested in Adelaide suburbs, authorities said.
More than 170 were arrested in NSW during festivities, charged with offences including assault and robbery. Ninety-seven people were charged last New Year’s Eve.
NSW Ambulance Deputy Commissioner Mick Willis said more than 1000 patients were treated in the metropolitan region overnight.
“Overall the crowd was very good … but sadly, again, through the use of alcohol and drugs we saw a number of violent clashes,” he told reporters.
On the water, more than 100 New Year’s Eve revellers had to be rescued from boats across Sydney, with three people taken to hospital.
Further south, at least two police officers were assaulted at a New Year’s Eve party in Melbourne.
About 15,000 people attended the monster bash at Edinburgh Gardens in North Fitzroy that forced authorities to set up a triage facility to treat about 20 revellers.
Twenty-three people were arrested in Melbourne’s city centre, while at least 160 people were treated by ambulance officers in the city surrounds.
In Queensland, more than 80,000 people packed Brisbane’s inner city about midnight and 44 people were arrested, down from 62 last New Year’s Eve.
The Gold Coast recorded less crime, with 92 arrests compared with 121 during the previous celebrations.