Be safe and avoid a New Year’s tragedy
SUMMIT COUNTY The No. 1 piece of advice may seem simple or redundant, but it’s a necessary reminder – don’t drink and drive. Have a plan to get home safely before going out to drink, said local law enforcement.”I have a New Year’s Eve wish that no one gets arrested or beats anyone up,” said Summit County Sheriff John Minor.However, knowing this holiday is one that is frequently accompanied with a certain amount of partying, local agencies will be out in force. That means extra DUI patrols and an increased presence throughout the entire county.So, most importantly to stay safe, keep others safe and avoid a DUI arrest, know bus times, pick a designated driver or make taxi arrangements, police said.”I don’t want anyone dying on our roads,” Minor said.A key factor when picking a designated driver is that they are perfectly sober, said Silverthorne Police Chief Joe Russell. “It doesn’t mean that’s the person that’s had the least amount to drink,” he continued.And everyone should write down the phone numbers of friends they are with and where they are staying in case they get separated, said Russell who has seen people end up out in the cold because they are too drunk, lost their friends and don’t know where they are going.When it’s 3 a.m. and 13 below zero, that’s when people start panicking about not knowing how to get home, he said, adding that if someone is lost in the cold they should call law enforcement.Another important piece of advice is to “know your limit,” Russell said.Alcohol takes heat and water from the body and could put someone at risk for hypothermia and dehydration, which for someone already not used to altitude could make altitude sickness far worse, Russell said.Additionally, while law enforcement knows there will be underage drinking, they are hoping parents will be responsible, know where their children are and make an agreement with other parents to have non-alcohol events. There are many ways to celebrate without having to imbibe alcohol, Russell said.Dillon Police Chief Joe Wray added that another factor to be aware of during the holiday is the increased traffic on the roads. Watch speed and that the vehicle and tires are Summit County weather ready, he said.Also, be aware of visitors, look out for them and extend a hand of hospitality, Wray said.”We want people to be able to have fun and be responsible while doing it,” Wray said.Lory Pounder can be reached at (970) 668-4628, or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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