BOSTON (WJZ) –Showing strength and bravery, thousands of runners took to the streets of Boston to run the annual Boston Marathon. It’s been a year since last year’s race ended in tragedy when twin bombs were set off, killing three people and injuring more than 200 others.
Mike Hellgren reports the increased security is not dampening the enthusiasm.
The bombs not only shook Boston but also the nation, leading to increased, more visible security at events. The challenge is maintaining safety without being overly intrusive.
“I think it’s a lot safer but I think there’s a bigger risk than last year because they knew it happened once; they know it can happen again,” said runner David Gould.
Lt. Col. Melissa Hyatt says the Boston bombings caused Baltimore City Police to reevaluate plans.
“Absolutely. The Boston marathon definitely changed the way we plan events in major cities,” Hyatt said. “It’s caused us to enhance our security measures and really leap into the future.”
As in Boston, Baltimore Police have grown increasingly dependent on a sophisticated network of cameras blanketing key locations downtown.
“Tools such as our Citiwatch program are really priceless,” Hyatt said.
After the Ravens championship celebration, cameras captured a stabbing that killed a teenager. They’re critical during Fourth of July and on New Year’s.
In Boston, police cameras continue to play a pivotal role. They helped identify the brothers suspected of planting the bombs last year.
At some events, Baltimore has put up fencing to limit access points and tighter security during the Boston marathon now includes bag checks.
“We are no stranger to this. The very first inaugural Baltimore Marathon occurred a month after 9/11,” said Lee Corrigan, Baltimore Running Festival.
Even with the best laid-plans, there’s always risk—but there’s also determination not to let terror win.
“We’re going to still be free when we’re out on that road. They can’t take that,” said Boston marathon participant Doug White.
The marathon brings in $175 million to the city of Boston.
Marathon participation has increased in both Baltimore and Boston.
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