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Party safely this New Year's Eve

By Staff | Dec 26, 2008

Out with the old, in with the new.

The calendar will change this Thursday, and as tradition calls for parties, get-togethers and celebrations to ring in the new year, remember to do so responsibly.

Several local and area restaurants and bars will be hosting special promotions to attract crowds, and likely many private gatherings will take place this New Year’s Eve.

This, indeed, is a popular night out for many, but here are a few reminders to keep in mind before heading out the door on New Year’s Eve.

–Statistically, the holiday ranks as one of the most dangerous times to be on the roadways, given the extra traffic and predictable party locations for many. If possible, limit the amount of time on the road, especially in the late evening or early morning hours. Leave the party or bar a little before closing time to avoid the rush. Those who have been drinking and are impaired will most likely be on the road at this time. By leaving a few minutes early, you can avoid them.

–When traveling from one place to another, always have a designated driver who is not drinking, and always wear seat belts and follow posted speed limits.

–It is winter, and recently we’ve experience some bitterly cold temperatures, so dress appropriately and have a winter survival kit. Be wary of ice on roads and sidewalks to avoid accidents. Cell phone coverage isn’t always reliable. Have a backup plan if you get stranded in your vehicle. And it’s a good idea to let someone know ahead of time where you are going.

–If you plan to drink alcohol, do so wisely. Be mindful of your beverage consumption and that of your friends around you. Keep the celebration to a responsible and safe level.

–And remember local law enforcement will be out in full force to ensure our streets and highways are safe and free of impaired drivers. Public safety is one of their jobs. So again, make the necessary arrangements and have a designated driver for those in your group who are planning to drink. Enjoy the night, but do so sensibly so we can all wake up to a new year.

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