Public safety officials outline plans to keep people safe during St. Patrick's Day


    City officials hold press conference days before the St. Patrick's Day festival to talk public safety (Katie Filling WTGS)

    The City of Savannah had their last press conference about the St. Patrick's Day festival on Wednesday, and the focus was on public safety.

    Savannah Police Chief Roy Minter and Fire and Rescue Chief Mark Revenew both spoke about how they're preparing and the message they have for the public.

    "Savannah is a great place. You can visit it and you can have fun without being reckless. We want everyone to enjoy themselves but be safe and responsible," said Revenew.

    They said people need to drink responsibly and not get out of control.

    "Be careful about indulging in alcohol to the point where you become a safety concern or a danger to yourself or others," said Minter.

    Citations will be given to people who don't follow the rules.

    "Drunkenness and inappropriate behavior will not be tolerated and will be addressed by members of the Savannah Police Department," said Minter.

    The police department will be out in full force with all officers on duty.

    "We will have maximum staffing at all events and as well as officers being available to respond to calls for service," said Minter.

    Police also want to remind people not to drink and drive. Find another solution like using a ride share service.

    Savannah fire and rescue officials have been going around downtown making sure buildings are up to code.

    "Our fire prevention division has gone through all the hotels in Savannah to ensure their fire safety equipment and warning systems are adequate and functioning," said Revenew.

    They're also making sure bars don't let more people in than they're allowed to.

    "They’ve also inspected all the alcohol serving establishments within the festival zone to ensure that they are meeting their occupancy standards," said Revenew.

    Marine Patrol will also be out during the festival to handle any incidents in the water.

    This year's Grand Marshal, Jerry Counihan, said he wants people to remember what this weekend is all about.

    "This is a faith-based celebration, the feast of Saint Patrick, the patron saint of Ireland. The police and the fire department are our friends, listen to them, they’re here to help us," said Counihan.

    "We want everybody to have a safe and enjoyable St. Patrick’s celebration, but once again, we remind everyone to be patient, to act appropriately and to drink responsibly," said Minter.


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