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Staying safe on New Year's Eve

LA CROSSE, Wis. (WEAU) -- Police are reminding those of you who are heading out to ring in the New Year to have fun, but use good judgment.

New Year's Eve is a time to celebrate, but the La Crosse Police Department said it also means there will be some extra sets of eyes on the roads.

“You know we obviously plan on keeping an eye in our downtown area and then the surrounding area around there making sure people are having a safe, fun evening,” said Lieutenant Patrick Hogan.

Hogan said the La Crosse Police Department is typically a little busier on New Year’s Eve.

He reminds people who are out on the town to have other people around, and have a designated driver.

The La Crosse County Tavern League offers a safe ride program, which provides patrons with a free ride home.

“La Crosse is one of the largest and the first safe ride programs in the state and we give annually somewhere between 7,000 and 10,000 rides alone in La Crosse County,” said La Crosse County Tavern League president Mike Brown.

Brown said taverns pay with vouchers for $2.

They also do fundraisers, and get matching funds from the Wisconsin Department of Transportation.

“We feel it's paramount in getting people home safely, and as a community effort whatever we can do to talk people into not to drive when they've been drinking,” said Brown.

Brown said if you want a ride, talk with a tavern league member, fill out a form and give it to your cab driver.

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