Happy New Year Everyone
HAPPY NEW YEAR EVERYONE!!!!!
I just wanted to wish y'all happiness for the new year, and that those of us who have tonight/tomorrow as "days off", have fun and enjoy. For those who will be out "keeping the peace" etc, stay safe out there. From the news reports of the last few days, law enforcement in particular is being stepped up all over the US, and in parts of Canada too. Victoria bars and night clubs will be open until 4am tonight!
TIGHTER THAN A DRUM
Dec 31, 2003 7:35 am US/Eastern
(1010 WINS) (NEW YORK) Revelers can expect hovering helicopters and bomb-sniffing dogs with their champagne and confetti as New York and other cities hunker down for the most heavily guarded New Year's Eve in memory.
Some security measures -- counter-snipers on rooftops, metal detectors on street corners -- are becoming as much a part of New Year's in New York as party hats.
"There's always threats, particularly at this time of year, but the fact of the matter is, the professionals are worrying about this," Mayor Michael Bloomberg said on NBC's "Today Show" Wednesday. "We're going to have a wonderful time."
With the nation on orange alert, there will be more officers on duty this year than last, and they will focus more heavily on hotels, landmarks and ferry terminals, police Commissioner Ray Kelly said Tuesday. He wouldn't reveal the number of officers.
Police are focusing on hotels and other "soft targets" as a result of intelligence and counterterror units' analyses of anti-American "chatter" gathered from the Internet and other sources, Kelly said.
"We think it's prudent for us to do that," he said.
City officials often say New York has been on the equivalent of orange alert since Sept. 11, 2001. But hikes in national terrorism preparedness nearly always lead to additional security measures in New York, too.
That's because threats to the city are often a large part of the reason why the national threat level is raised, said Pat Damuro, assistant director in charge of the FBI's New York office.
The office will have four times as many agents on duty in its 24-hour operations center, along with hundreds of other agents on duty or standing by, Damuro said.
Some will be in Times Square. Others will be in squads that can be quickly deployed to chase down leads in case of an imminent attack, Damuro said.
"We've pulled out all the stops," he said.
The police department will have seven helicopters above the Times Square crowd, including a new $9.8 million model packed with communications equipment and cameras for scanning crowds. In addition, the Federal Aviation Administration will ban flights except scheduled commercial airliners over Manhattan from Wednesday evening until early Thursday morning.
Organizers said they expect this year's Times Square crowd to be larger than last year's mass of 750,000.
Manhole covers are being sealed shut in Times Square, and mail boxes, trash cans and newspaper boxes are being removed. Plainclothes officers will mingle with the crowds, and elite counterterror teams will have equipment to detect chemical, biological or radiological contamination.
"Sadly," Mayor Michael Bloomberg said, "terrorism is something that we have to live with. Leave the worrying to the professionals."
But concerned about terrorism, U.S. Rep. Christopher Shays, R-Conn., urged revelers not to attend New Year's Eve celebrations like the one at Times Square.
Shays said it is irresponsible for officials to make people think they don't need to take precautions, like avoiding packed crowds in New York City.
"I wouldn't go into places when you're packed and where if there was panic, a lot of injuries would take place," he told WVIT-TV.
Jennifer Falk, a spokeswoman for Bloomberg, took issue with Shays' comments.
"It's unfortunate that a United States congressman has so little confidence in the world's greatest police department," she said. "We look forward to accepting his apology on Jan. 1."
Stay Safe, and see y'all in the New Year!
27 and all the Canadians same to you !!!!everyone have a safe night of celebrating and carrying on !
Happy New Years!
hope everyone stays safe and ill talk to ya next year... har har harrr
From deep in the heart of Manhattan...the most secure area on the planet...Happy New Year!
2004....health, prosperity and peace to you all!