Staying Safe While Celebrating New Year's Eve

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New Year's Eve and Day are ranked as the deadliest two-day period for drunk driving related accidents. So to keep everyone safe, officials suggest people make preparations before heading out.

"You have to plan ahead a little bit. If you know you're going to go out and celebrate and indulge a little bit, plan ahead. Plan for a designated driver, have somebody with you that isn't going to be partying or drinking that can drive a group of people home," said Lieutenant Jeff
Pelowski of the Nebraska State Patrol.

AAA also advises people to avoid getting in a car with a driver who's been drinking and taking away keys from friends who may have had too much.

For their part, some local bartenders said they'll stop serving anyone who's clearly intoxicated.

"Making sure they get cut off when they need to get cut off. If they do need a ride, we call a cab for them, make sure they have a DD, just so everybody's safe and everybody else's driving safe too," said Diana Sinsel, a bartender at Balz Sports Bar.

Law enforcement officials noted that driving after even just one drink can be dangerous.

"With the snow on the ground, we've been dealing also with a lot of adverse weather conditions which makes it even more dangerous for those impaired drivers to be out there. So it's something we're really focusing on going through tonight and into tomorrow," Pelowski said.

Along with other law enforcement officials, the Nebraska State Patrol will be out in full force to keep drunk drivers off the streets.

"We have our normal shifts working tonight, our normal troopers scheduled for shift, and then we're also working troopers on an overtime status through this grant to focus directly on impaired drivers," said Pelowski, noting that "you drink, you drive, you lose."

And officials said you can also help keep the roads safe.

"For the motorists that are out there traveling, if they see any driving behaviors that look unsafe, report it to your local officials who will get it to our officers, deputies, troopers out working the roads so we can hopefully take them off before they cause any accidents or injuries," said Pelowski.

People can call 911 or *55 if they spot anyone driving erratically,