NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) — An estimated 1 million revelers ushered in 2017 in Times Square, but after the ball dropped, the cleanup began.
A small army of city employees including 235 sanitation workers, 45 police officers and two deputy police chiefs immediately began the task of clearing the area of confetti and other garbage.
As the clock struck midnight and confetti fell on the crowd, the sea of revelers said goodbye to a dizzying year dominated by a bitter presidential election.
“It’s a bucket list item. You have to do it once,” said Ammon Orgil from San Francisco. “The energy — so fun. You with other people, out of control. Totally worth it.”
Some in the crowds in Times Square had been standing in the viewer pens since 8 a.m. Saturday.
“A couple pairs of socks, long Johns, gloves,” said Ashleigh Rogers from Manchester, U.K. “Layers and that’s all you need.”
Stars like Gloria Estefan kept crowds of purple and gold entertained throughout the night as they kissed under the famous Waterford crystal ball.
United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon pushed the Waterford crystal button that began the 60-second countdown to 2017.
For more than two decades, security has gradually been tightened for the event. Recent deadly truck attacks in Germany and France brought about another security upgrade this year. Dozens of 20-ton sanitation trucks weighted with an extra 15 tons of sand blocked off streets leading to the celebration zone.
Police said about 7,000 officers, along with specially armed counterterrorism units and bomb-sniffing dogs, were also on guard.
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