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Safety & Health Tips for Celebrating New Year’s in Boston

New Year’s Eve is a time for indulging and imbibing, the consummate celebration in which we ring in a new annum with celebratory confetti, captivating cuisine, and cheery champagne. But, as we know all too well, Bostonians tend to tip the elbow more so than other cities. With that in mind, if you’re going to drink to excess (and let’s be honest, we all are), we want you to do it safely and soundly.

So before you start belting our your truly terrible rendition of Auld Lang Syne, consider the following safety items from the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Posted on the official blog of MassGov, these suggestions range from travel tips to pet palliations to avoiding alcohol poisoning. Adhere to this advice and you’ll surely kickstart 2014 in the best possible way.

Happy New Year’s, Boston!

If you’re hitting the road for New Year’s:

  • Don’t drink and drive.
  • If you have a friend who does not drink, ask them to be the designated driver.
  • If you are driving: be alert behind the wheel, be aware of your surroundings, and be prepared to drive in winter weather.
  • Use seatbelts and prepare an emergency safety kit for your vehicle.
  • Take public transportation if possible; the MBTA will operate until 2 a.m. on Jan 1st.

If you’re boozing:

  • Pace yourself and pay attention to how much you are consuming. Drinking too much alcohol can make you sick and can lead to alcohol poisoning.
  • Stay hydrated by alternating alcoholic drinks with water, juice, or soda.
  • Alcohol typically enters the bloodstream quickly. However, the amount and type of food in your stomach can alter this pace: high-carbohydrate and high-fat foods can slow the absorption of alcohol into the bloodstream.
  • If you’ve had too much to drink, call a taxi or have a sober friend or family member pick you up.

If you have a little four-legged schnookums at home:

  • Loud noises can scare pets. Give them extra attention so they pets won’t run away in a panic upon hearing the pop of a champagne bottle or exploding fireworks.
  • Keep your pets inside, in a comfortable room, with comforting music playing to drown out loud, unusual noises.
  • Make sure all fences and gates are secure so if pets leave the house, they are confined to the yard.
  • Ask your veterinarian for tranquilizers if your animal has shown signs of extreme uneasiness around loud noises or crowds in the past.
  • Make sure your pet has its ID, or dog license, and if it has a microchip, make sure it is current. This will make it easier to get you pet back if he/she escapes your home and yard during festivities.

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