Friday, December 28, 2012

Stay Safe New Year's Eve

New Year’s Eve is a night to have fun and celebrate the coming year, but revelers need to remember that Collier County Sheriff’s Office has a zero-tolerance policy toward drinking and driving.

Deputies will be out Monday night watching for impaired drivers. They’ll be walking restaurant districts and driving Collier County roads, making sure everyone gets home safely.

As in previous years, deputies will be putting an extra focus on areas where they’ve seen impaired drivers in the past. They’ll also be monitoring teen gathering places making sure no underage drinking is going on.

Deputies also will continue to maintain a visible presence all night long on New Year’s Eve. Typically, deputies make no more DUI arrests on New Year’s Eve than any other night in Collier County.

CCSO offers these tips for a safe celebration:

* Use a designated driver, or call a cab if you plan to attend a celebration and drink alcohol.

* If you are hosting a party make sure to provide plenty of non-alcoholic drink options.

* Remember that even if you don’t feel “drunk” the next morning, your driving may still be impaired, according to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism.

* Report any drunken or impaired drivers by calling 911.

And when making your New Year’s celebration plans, remember that deputies will be cracking down on any illegal use of fireworks or firing of guns.

Using fireworks that explode or fly is illegal, unless they are being used in a professional demonstration with proper permits.

We understand that many people want to create personal fireworks displays, but there are safety issues to consider. You can injure yourself when lighting the wick, or the fireworks could travel and injure someone else. They can also set a house or vegetation on fire.

Firing a gun into the air in celebration of the New Year is against the law. Florida law states that it is illegal to fire a gun in any public place, over an occupied building or house, or in the right of way of any paved road, highway, or street.

If you know of anyone using illegal fireworks or firing a gun during the holiday weekend, contact CCSO at 252-9300.