Marathon Lined With Extra Security This Year
PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — When it comes to security, the most obvious change for runners – was having to use clear plastic bags to check any items.
“It’s not really that big of hassle when you look at the problems they had up in Boston,” Mike Purpura of Cranberry said. “I think Pittsburgh taking the precautions are doing the right thing.”
Twenty-nine bomb sniffing dogs inspected the marathon route.
The Coast Guard also made inspections under bridges.
And a device on top of a building as well as this hand-held version were used by a local company to look for any chemical agents or fertilizer that could be used in a bomb.
Another change was that spectators were kept farther away from the runners’ starting area.
Backpacks and bags weren’t allowed beyond the checkpoint – an officer even looked at the stroller Russ Shelly’s daughter Maggie was in.
“There’s understandable concern these day,” he said. “It’s just a reality of our times.”
The city determined which garbage cans along the route to remove – and which ones to keep.
There were extra police and paramedics had extra gear including tourniquets.
At 10 a.m. there was a report of a suspicious package found at the intersection of Fifth Street and Liberty Avenue, investigators got there right away, but found nothing.
The race went off rather smoothly.
“It’s a sense of relief, the event happened,” Marathon Director Patrice Matamoros said. “I think we found a nice balance between security and safety reassuring our runners and still creating a fun atmosphere.”