Police tighten security ahead of New Year’s Eve Peach Drop

As preparations get underway expected security plans are already in place.

Channel 2′s Audrey Washington was at Atlanta Underground in downtown Atlanta.

Thousands of people are expected to ring in the new year there.

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Channel 2′s camera rolled as crews built this stage from the ground up.

In just a couple of days, more than 50,000 people will descend upon underground Atlanta for the now iconic New Year’s Eve Peach Drop.

“I think people are ready to be out,” Cynthia Johnson said.

Police officers will be on hand to patrol the crowd from the ground and above.

“We do a very heavy physical and video and drone surveillance and aerial surveillance with our helicopter unit,” Major Gary Harper said.

Police urge folks to party smart. That means have a plan. For example, parking is limited, so take MARTA to get around.

Also, walk with another person or in a group and always be aware of your surroundings.

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“When it comes to any suspicious packages or individuals, notify the officer on post and we can react immediately,” Major Eddie Smith Jr said.

Police also ask people to not participate in any celebratory gunfire. It’s illegal and dangerous.

“Often, people affected by celebratory gunfire are not involved. The bullets just go wherever they want to go,” Harper said.

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Still, North Carolina tourists, Cynthia and Michael Johnson, say the added security makes them feel better about the big Peach Drop celebration.

“The more security makes it more likely I would come out,” Michael Johnson said.

Police warn everyone to park at a legit parking garage or lot and to beware of any unauthorized parking options.

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