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Celebrate the new year safely, responsibly

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Copyright © 2021 Roswell Daily Record

RPD: Firing a gun not an appropriate way to celebrate

As Roswell residents ring in the new year, Roswell police ask that everyone remember to take care of yourself and those around you this New Year’s Eve. Please don’t let bad choices ruin a happy time by causing an accident that could leave people injured or dead.

When it comes to driving, the Roswell Police Department asks everyone to take responsibility to be a safe driver by remembering to:

• Never drink and drive. Before you head somewhere where people will be drinking, line up a ride home if you are going to be drinking. Make sure you have a designated driver or have the phone number to a cab or non-drinking friend willing to pick you up. Even if you think you will only drink a little bit and won’t be impaired to drive, plan on not driving. Don’t take a risk you could regret — if you live to regret it. And if you are not going to be drinking, consider volunteering to be the designated driver for you and your friends.

• Always wear your seatbelt. Making sure your seatbelt is fastened properly only takes a moment but can make a life-and-death difference in a serious accident. Also, make sure your passengers wear their seatbelts and make sure any children in the vehicle are secure in their seatbelts or appropriate child safety seats.

• Be patient. There may be more than the usual amount of people on the road New Year’s Eve and into the late-night hours. You might want to allow a little extra time for travel so you’re not rushed while on the road. Always drive defensively and watch out for the other guy.

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In addition to acting in a safe manner behind the wheel of a vehicle, people must also know that firing a gun is not an appropriate way to celebrate the new year. With just a few exceptions (and “celebrating” is not one of them) it is illegal to discharge a gun within city limits, and regardless of your location, random shooting — including into the air — puts people in danger. Any bullets fired upward into the air have to come down somewhere, with potentially serious consequences. You may not mean to hurt anyone, but stray bullets can be deadly. Don’t put someone’s life, as well as your own future, in jeopardy.

RPD will have plenty of officers on patrol New Year’s Eve to help keep Roswell a safe place amid the celebrating, but everyone’s help is needed to make sure the new year is welcomed to town in a safe and responsible manner. Anyone who sees what looks like the actions of a drunk driver, or any other forms of dangerous behavior, on New Year’s Eve (or anytime) is asked to call the Roswell Police Department at 575-624-6770, or dial 911.

The Roswell Police Department thanks citizens for their commitment to safety and responsibility, and wishes everyone a Happy New Year and a great 2021!