Bomb-sniffing dogs? Check. Times Square audience? Not this season

FILE - In this Dec. 31, 2014, file photo, New York Police Department counterterrorism officers, foreground, armed with an explosives detection device, far right, watch as other police officers inspect revelers entering a cordoned off area in Times Square in New York, on New Years Eve. Although New York City police have turned to familiar tactics ahead of the iconic Thursday, Dec. 31, 2020, ball drop, the department's playbook this year includes an unusual mandate: preventing crowds from gathering in Times Square. (AP Photo/Kathy Willens, File)

NEW YORK — New York City authorities turned into familiar tactics before Thursday’s New Year’s Eve parties, deploying bomb-sniffing puppies and sand-filled sanitation trucks meant to shield against explosions.

However, the section’s playbook this year comprises an odd mandate: preventing audiences of any size from collecting in Times Square.

Citing concerns over the spread of COVID-19, authorities shut the Crossroads of the Earth to vehicles and pedestrians at midnight and stated they’d disperse any onlookers entering a so-called”frozen zone” — that the blocks surrounding the chunk that draw shoulder-to-shoulder audiences.

The coronavirus has upended public existence, and also New Year’s Eve will be no different. This year, authorities said, revelers headed to Times Square will not be allowed past police lines.

“If you believe you are likely to have the ability to stand there and see the ball, then you are confused,” Chief of Department Terence Monahan stated, speaking to this glittering, crystal that melts a flagpole at Times Square every New Year’s Eve to indicate the stroke of midnight.

However, Mayor Bill de Blasio pledged, “It is likely to become a joyous night if ever there was one. Here comes something much better: 2021.”

“I can’t wait to get started” turning the page over a year after New York became the epicenter of the pandemic in spring, the Democratic mayor said. The town has relied on over 25,000 deaths caused by the virus.

The NYPD declared a two-part freeze which will be expansive at 3 p.m. guests in five resorts in the region have been advised to remain indoors.

Juanita Holmes, chief of patrol for the NYPD, advocated prospective partygoers to ring in 2021″ from the comfort of your property.”

It’s a bucket list thing for many others. However, this year differs,” she explained. “I can not emphasize enough how important it is for all to stay home.”

However, it’s proposed a radically scaled-back existence in Times Square, such as an 80% decrease in its normal workforce delegated to the region.

“We constantly have to get ready for the worst concerning counterterrorism overlays,” Police Commissioner Dermot Shea stated, “however, the audiences won’t be like they had been indifferent decades.”

This year’s party will unfold minus the typical throngs of cheering, kissing revelers. The occasion’s special guests, first responders, and essential employees were expected to observe the festivities in a personal, well-spaced location.

“This is a chunk fall about nothing, at which you can not view,” he stated, “so you might also stay home.”