Latvia's emergency service awaits New Year with apprehension

The State Emergency Medical Service (NMPD) is expecting the new year with concern, said Liene Cipule, director of the service, in an interview with the Latvian Television on December 28.

“We are looking toward the new year with concern because alcohol is more consumed this holiday and the risk of different injuries is also increasing,” Cipule said.

However, Christmas had been relatively calm, said Cipule.

Earlier, NMPD spokeswoman Laura Bērziņa told LETA that Latvian residents celebrated Christmas peacefully and responsibly, so NMPD medics did not have to go to calls where serious injuries related to celebrations would have been sustained.

Annually, on New Year's Eve, NMPD medics go on calls to those who have been negligent in handling various pyrotechnic articles due to recklessness and the influence of alcohol.

These include lacerations and extensive body burns, facial injuries with bone fractures, eye damage and vision impairment, hand injuries with shattered fingers and amputations, fractures, and other injuries. In addition, not only adults, but children and young people who have been left without adult supervision also experience injuries, Bērziņa said.

The NMPD sends the public well wishes and reminds everyone to protect themselves and loved ones not only on New Year but throughout their lives.

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