COLUMBUS (WCMH) — Half a million people are expected to descend upon downtown on Tuesday for Red White and Boom. Police are urging safety, preparation and traffic patience.
Columbus police say they have spent months preparing for the city’s largest fireworks event.
It’s expected to be hot, with heavy traffic. Police say pack light and have a plan.
“What we want to encourage everybody to do is a couple of things. If you come down make sure you take an updated photograph of your child,” said Columbus Police Sargent John Hurst.
Hurst says there will be five missing children booths and first aid stations throughout the festival. Take the time to register your child at one of these booths.
Police advise parents to make sure your child knows their parents’ phone number and home address in case you get separated or write it on a piece of paper be out it in their pocket.
Also take your child to one of the safety booths and introduce them to an officer so they know where to go if lost.
Leaving the event in years past would take hours with long traffic line. New this year, police are designating officers to traffic posts to speed up traffic after the fireworks.
“Now we have designated some officers to go directly to the traffic post. They will be in place prior to the fireworks being launched and hopefully, this will help clear out downtown, get people home quickly,” said Sergeant Laura Suber.
CPD will be using the same safety texting system as they did for the Pride Festival.
Event goers will be able to text 888-777 for emergency text notifications. Text the message “RWB2018” to receive alerts.