SOMERSET — Public Safety Day has been held in Somerset for many years, but with issues going on around the country during the past year with controversial shootings, Somerset Police Chief George McNeil said the event that will be held on Oct. 1 may be even more important for educating the public about what the police do.
"It's good timing for it," Chief McNeil said.
Public Safety Day will be held on Saturday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Police/Fire Complex located at 465 County St. Some of the activities at the event will include a K-9 demonstration with Somerset Police Department officer and handler Jared Linhares with Viepo and the Bristol County Sheriff's Department. The Sheriff's Department will also be doing finger printing of children.
Chief McNeil said the Police Department's new equipment will be on display, including a motorcycle. He said he is hoping the Police Department's new Dodge Charger will be ready for people to see at Public Safety Day. He said it was having some lettering and other work on it.
Home Depot will also have an area for its public safety display. Chief McNeil said there will be stands with information about public safety for the public, including information and drugs and opioids, which has been in the news a lot during the past year.
"It's just a great way for the people to get to know the firemen and the police officers and learn about what they do," Chief McNeil said of the Public Safety Day.
The Police Department will be selling tee shirts to raise money for new equipment for officers. On the front of the shirt, it says "Somerset Police, Support the Blue." On the back of the shirt, are the words "Our goal is to preserve and improve the quality of life, keep the peace and protect property through unwavering attention to our duties. The shirts are available in short sleeves for $20 and long sleeves for $25. They were sold at the Spirit of Somerset Family Fun day and will also be sold at Public Safety Day on Oct. 1 at the Police/Fire Complex on County Street.
Chief McNeil said hamburgers, hot dogs and water have been donated for the Public Safety Day.
"There's going to be a lot of free food and free drinks," Chief McNeil said.
Somerset Fire Chief Scott Jepson said the Fire Department will have hoses that children can spray water with and the Bristol County Technical Rescue Team will be at Public Safety Day. He said the Forest Fire Division of the Department of Conservation and Recreation will be on hand at the Public Safety Day. Chief Jepson said Smokey the Bear will be at Public Safety Day, but the department could not get the smoke house that it usually does because it has been booked elsewhere. He said fire apparatus will be on display, including the new pumper truck and ambulance. Chief Jepson said free pizza from Papa Gino's will be given out. He said informational pamphlets will be distributed, as well as helmets for children.
"It's always a great event," Chief Jepson said of the Public Safety Day.