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South Florida law enforcement officers have tips to keep you safe this New Year's Eve

Posted at 5:38 PM, Dec 31, 2018
and last updated 2018-12-31 17:38:09-05

PALM BEACH COUNTY, Fla. — Law enforcement agencies across our area are working to keep you safe this New Year's Eve, but there are some safety tips you should be aware of to avoid becoming a victim of the most common crimes on nights like this.

First, look both ways before you cross the street.

"Make sure that if you are a pedestrian, you're really aware of your surroundings," said Dani Moschella, Delray Beach Police Public Information Officer. "Watch for cars, hold onto your kids."

Delray Beach police are expecting tens of thousands of people downtown and plan to have a robust law enforcement presence, but stress that people need to stay alert.

"Well we have to stay together," said Ilene Saginor, who's visiting from Ohio. "I just talked to my husband whose getting his haircut, that we have to have our phones cause it's so easy to get separated."

Next, if you're parking a car, make sure it's in a well lit area and don't leave any valuables in plain sight.

"Lock your doors and make sure you take even sunglasses and coins and chargers and hide them away. Don't ever leave any valuable items like your purse and cell phone in your car," said Moschella.

Also, both West Palm Beach and Delray Beach police say cell phone thefts are common during big city events, so keep an eye on your cell phone. Your back pocket is not a good place for it.

"Thieves are generally opportunistic so don't give them that opportunity. Make sure you keep your cell phone put away in your purse or pocket," said Moschella.

If you're going to party and that involves drinking, don't drive. And the number one safety tip is to pull the trigger on fun, not a gun.

"I mean it's a bullet, it goes up and it must come down. It could kill somebody," said Sam Saidi of Boynton Beach.

West Palm Beach will have events for families at Sandi Tree Downtown.

Delray Beach will have a fireworks show at 9 p.m. at the Old School Square downtown.