NYC police: We’re ready for New Year’s Eve in Times Square

- FILE - Workers prepare to test the Waterford crystal ball for the New Year's Eve celebration atop One Times Square in New York, Tuesday, Dec. 30, 2014. The ball, which is 12 feet in diameter and weighs 11,875 pounds, is decorated with 2,688 Waterford crystals and illuminated by 32,256 LED lights. (AP Photo/Kathy Willens)

NEW YORK (AP) — New York City officials say the New Year’s Eve celebration in Times Square will be the safest place in the world, heavily secured by thousands of officers, including a new specialized counterterrorism unit.

About 1 million people are expected to pack midtown Manhattan to watch the 11,875-pound Waterford crystal ball drop. Partygoers will be screened with hand-held metal detectors twice — once when they enter one of the 14 access points to the celebration and once when they enter pens where they must stay.

Thousands of officers will be assigned to the festivities. Visitors will see heavily armed counterterrorism teams and bomb-sniffing dogs. Rooftop patrols and New York Police Department helicopters will keep an eye on the crowd, and plainclothes officers will blend in with revelers.

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