Top New York City officials revealed Friday safety protocols surrounding New Year’s Eve in Times Square.
Mayor Eric Adams, top cop Keechant Sewell, FDNY Commissioner Laura Kavanagh, and more gathered on West 47 Street & 7th Avenue to state that the big celebration is not currently facing any credible threats. However, Commissioner Sewell underscored that the police department has not been resting on its laurels and has in fact been preparing for this moment since the last ball dropped.
“As always, as the mayor stated you will see thousands of uniformed police officers out there on post in addition to the many officers assigned to their regular duties of patrolling all of our neighborhoods throughout the streets, subways and housing developments, and as we ensure the safety of everyone moving around the city and enjoying these festivities, there will also be much that the public does not see intentionally. It is an elaborate, layered approach,” Sewell said.
The public will be able to access the viewing area from 6th and 8th Avenue at 38th Street, 49th Street, 52nd Street, and 56th Street through special checkpoints. Police officials also warned that items such as backpacks, chairs, and umbrellas will not be permitted under the bright lights of the city’s beating heart. Still, those who have been screened will be allowed to leave the area to use the restroom, however, they must once again face the rigorous security check upon return.
During the briefing, Mayor Eric Adams recalled his swearing ceremony in Times Square just after the ball dropped almost one year prior. He encouraged all in attendance, especially those who are tourists, to enjoy the businesses in the area and see Broadway productions. He added that approximately 56 million tourists are predicted to have visited New York City with another 72 million anticipated for next year.
“The goal is a very clear goal and that is public safety. We must be safe and we can do it in a very organized fashion,” Adams said. “New York is becoming that attractive place. Not only for our international tourists but also domestic tourists.”
December 31 will mark the first year the event has returned to full capacity since 2019 and will be under heavy for surveillance, including bomb detection, plain-clothed cops, K-9 units, rooftop units, and more to ensure the New Year is rung in safely.