In last year’s bombing of the Boston Marathon 3 people were killed and 260 were injured. Boston’s FBI say that there is no such threat to this year’s race. Massachusetts State Police Colonel Tim Alben acknowledged that at last year’s event there hadn’t been a specific threat or intelligence that warned them either, but this time they are ready for anything.
“There was no chatter last year, and we are all very aware what happened then,” Alben told reporters.
The security will include Police helicopters flying above, bomb sniffing dogs, uniformed military police officers, and hundreds of uniformed police officers who will be right next to a suspected large number of plainclothes law enforcement officials.
Many of the runners are performing an honor run for the victims – Martin Richard, Lingzi Lu, and Krystal Campbell, as well as others who were maimed for life. Kurt Schwartz, Massachusetts Undersecretary of Homeland Security, also makes it clear that the goal is to keep the character of the 118 year old event by making it a “fun, festive, family focused day.”
Officials insist that the character of the 118-year event will be preserved if runners and Patriots Day revelers cooperate by not bringing bags and bottles to the event, helping authorities “strike the right balance,” for the race.
“It will be a fun, festive, family focused day,” Schwartz insisted.
To help keep the integrity of the marathon and create sound security, backpacks are prohibited through the eight cities and towns that participate in the marathon and police are calling for all belongings to be held in clear plastic bags. No one will be allowed to carry any liquid more than one liter.
This race is to be one of honor, for those set on pushing their bodies through the pounding run and for those victims who no longer have the chance to do so.