Friday, September 2, 2016

The busy season

Today marks the start of a busy season for Lincoln's public safety personnel. LPD has already cracked 400 daily incidents a couple times in the recent past, including 411 yesterday, Thursday September 1st. Last year, the busiest single day for Lincoln police officers, with 443 events dispatched, was September 5, 2015--the Saturday of Nebraska's home football game with BYU. Tomorrow's 2016 home opener with Fresno State will be similar, and today's pre-game will be no slouch, either

Five of the busiest six day for the police last year were the Fridays and Saturdays of home football games. The lone exception was May 7, the day of an unusual flooding event that inundated parts of Lincoln's south bottoms neighborhood.

September 5, 2015 was also the busiest day last year for Lincoln Fire & Rescue, with 128 incidents.  The day of the flood, May 7, was number two, but after that the lists diverge for police and fire. July 4 was pretty hectic for both, ranking 12th for LPD and 7th for LF&R

My rough count shows 47 officers and 16 firefighters with game-related duties tomorrow, and that's on top of all the other usual stuff associated with a busy fall weekend when tens of thousands of visitors descend on the City. Fortunately, it's a night game and the weather will be mild, which may take some of the edge off.

As busy as it gets during these weekends, it's also an exciting time for public safety professionals. The police officers, firefighters, and dispatchers who make it all work are generally exhausted in an oddly pleasant way when it all wraps up. My hope is that it comes off safely, and everyone eventually hits a cool pillow for a good and well-deserved rest sometime on Sunday morning.


Anonymous said...

Using your years of experience: Take a guess what time on Saturday detox will be closed to males? How about females?

Anonymous said...

Have you ever crunched the numbers comparing how the numbers differ when the Huskers lose vs when they win? Just a W.A.G on my part but I'll bet they are up after a loss.
Gun Nut

Steve said...

Maybe it's just me, but I can't help but think all the extra officers and all the lane closures and such that take place in the name of moving game day traffic are a waste of time and money. I seldom venture anywhere near the game day crowds any more, but I have witnessed the chaos in the past. People who don't know whether to obey the light or the police officer, people who can't figure out how to get where they want to go because every street they try is closed, or closed lanes prevent them from turning where they intended. Intersections blocked regardless of the presence of police. In short, utter chaos.

Why not just let the the normal rules of the road and traffic lights do the job they were intended to do? Sure, there will be a lot of aholes blocking intersections as they try to sneak through on the red and get held up by the traffic in front of them, but it happens anyway. If police would routinely ticket those aholes on a daily basis, maybe they would be more careful and considerate on game days.

I think traffic would be a mess, but not any more so than it already is, and we'd save a lot of overtime for police and city employees who have to go out and place about a million traffic cones and them pick them up again afterward.

Anonymous said...

Steve, if it was just the cars, perhaps your theory would be worth trying. The issue is the 90,000+ pedestrians that have to have a place to walk. Even on the busiest times of the day during rush hour traffic, you're not dealing with that kind of crush of humans. The city would get crucified for not having officers out doing their best to control things if you started having people get hit by cars on a regular basis. Also, by having officers in the intersections, you actually have the possibility of being somewhat close to a situation if there is an emergency. Under your scenario, officers would have to fight through the cars and humanity to get to a situation that needed assistance quickly. The amount of overtime paid to officers and other city employees is a pittance compared to what is brought into the city on a game day in terms of hotel, bar, and restaurant taxes. It's the cost of doing big business.

Mark Bach said...

Now that would be an interesting number cruncher.
What is the incremental increase in city taxes for a football home game weekend compared to the additional costs incurred to host that event?

ARRRRG!!!! said...

Happy Talk Like a Pirate Day!!!!

Steve said...


If you read this, I don't really care if you post it or not. I had a question that I think you blogged about in the past, but I can't find it, nor can I find anything in the city code. However, I'm fairly sure we have (or had) and ordinance of some kind regarding found money (or valuables). I'm not sure of the specifics, but I think it was something like anything over a value of $100 had to be turned in to the police, and if no one claimed it after a certain time, it was returned to the finder. Can you provide any info in that regard?