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Local law enforcement officials prepare for New Year’s Eve celebrations

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Posted at 6:27 PM, Dec 28, 2021

Local officials are preparing for this year's New Year’s Eve celebrations.

A year after a complete shutdown due to the pandemic, New Year’s Eve 2021 is primed to be an active evening for people celebrating the countdown to 2022.

“We weren’t able to be open last year, so this year we’re really trying to get people back out here. We’ve got a couple champagne toasts, we’re just really stoked to have people celebrate New Year’s this year,” said James Menno, manager at Buffalo Pub in San Luis Obispo.

While bars are open and local businesses are preparing for people to return for the New Year’s Eve celebration, local law enforcement officials are also preparing for those who decide to get behind the wheel while intoxicated.

“We obviously have people that are stationed downtown during the weekends to monitor the crowd and address any problems. We will have additional officers and we have grant funding to put officers on the street to specifically look for DUIs,” said San Luis Obispo Police Department Traffic Sergeant Jeff Booth.

“We are expecting a higher volume of vehicles out there this New Year’s Eve and we are prepared by sending every available officer out there to patrol and be ready to respond,” said Templeton California Highway Patrol Officer Jose Meza.

“We know people are ready to go back out, they are ready to go party and celebrate, and that is fantastic. If you are going back out into the bars and restaurants, remember to take it easy,” said San Luis Obispo County Behavioral Health Division Manager Frank Warren.

With celebrating the new year comes the responsibility of self-awareness and how much is too much to consume.

“Younger people who this is their first time to go out on a New Year’s night or New Year’s weekend, they may not know how to regulate,” Warren said.

It is recommended that those who are going out to celebrate on New Year’s Eve plan with alternative methods of transportation or a designated driver.

“Safety is always a priority, both on our end making sure we are not overserving, but also on the customers end to make sure they get a ride home,” Menno said.

“We don’t want to rain on anyone’s parade, we want you to have fun and enjoy the new year coming in, just make good choices,” Sgt. Booth added.

“Be responsible, making it to your family home is what is most important,” Meza said.

“Whether there are less people on the road or lots of people on the road, it only takes one,” Warren concluded.

If you believe you are witnessing an inebriated driver, officers say to call 911 immediately.