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Festive revellers urged to Party Safe


Police Scotland officers in Aberdeen are urging members of the public to think about personal safety and protecting their belongings in the run up to Christmas.

As part of the force's Operation Oak campaign, officers held an event on Belmont Street today [Monday 16 December] to give advice to revellers on staying safe while they are out in the city centre.

The Party Safe event highlighted the message that police want people to have a good time but to do so responsibly.

The festive period can see in excess of 35,000 extra people welcomed into the city on any given day.

Aberdeen City Council is supporting Operation Oak and encouraging party goers to download Safer Aberdeen's mobile app, which contains practical advice to help people have a safe and enjoyable night out in the city centre.

Safer Aberdeen is also working closely with Unight, a partnership comprising Aberdeen's licensed trade which was formed to ensure party goers have a safe and enjoyable time in city venues.

Aberdeen City Council Social Care, Wellbeing and Safety Vice-Convener Councillor Gordon Graham said: "Aberdeen City Council is delighted to be supporting Operation Oak and its Party Safe campaign.

"This is the time of year when the city's night time economy is thriving and it is vitally important people stay safe while enjoying themselves.

"We would encourage anyone planning a night out in the city to download Safer Aberdeen's mobile app which provides practical advice and essential phone numbers.

"The app, which is free to download on Apple and Android devices, features five sections - Before, Out and About, Go Home, Find Me and Contacts - all of which focus on the various aspects of a night out.

"As well as practical advice, the app also features maps marked with Aberdeen Royal Infirmary's accident and emergency department, Police Scotland's Aberdeen headquarters and locations of taxi ranks and bus stops along Union Street.

"This is a very practical tool to have at hand to ensure anyone getting into the festive spirit in Aberdeen this year does so safely."

Police Scotland City Centre Community Policing Team Sergeant Jonathan LePoidevin added: "Our message is clear, we want people to enjoy themselves but in a safe and responsible manner.

"People should plan for their night and ensure they are able to get home safely whether that be by public transport, such as taxis or buses, or a friend or relative collects them.

"Aberdeen is a fantastic city with so much on offer and it is a safe place. We want it to stay that way and to ensure that the vast majority of people can enjoy themselves in a secure environment.

"Simple steps can be taken to help prevent you from becoming a victim of crime. For example don't leave your phone or other belongings on tables in pubs or restaurants and  make sure you keep your bag close to you and never leave it unattended, even for a short period.

"Look out for your friends and make sure you let someone know when you are expected to get home."