More officers, restrictions planned for April race after bombings
BOSTON — Enhanced Boston Marathon security measures announced Monday morning include restrictions on what spectators may have along the 26.2-mile course.
An estimated 3,500 police officers — many in uniform, but some undercover — will be along the course, MEMA Director Kurt Schwartz said. The number of surveillance cameras will also be increased.
“We are enlisting the support of runners and spectators in ensuring we have a safe event. We are promoting the simple slogan, ‘If you see something, say something,'” Schwartz said.
Spectators along the route are being discouraged from bringing backpacks or any similar item carried over the shoulder, coolers, glass containers or cans, handbags lager than 12 inches by 12 inches by 6 inches, large blankets and costumes that cover the face.
“If you are going to carry personal items, we urge you to carry them in clear plastic bags,” Schwartz said.
About 130 National Guardsmen will march as participants, wearing BAA bibs in groups of 10.
The security announcements are in addition to measures revealed last month to protect the runners and spectators.
No bags will be allowed at marathon venues or on the buses runners take from Boston to the start line in Hopkinton. Several viewing areas in Hopkinton will also have heightened security rules.
“We are confident that the overall experience of runners and spectators will not be impacted and all will enjoy a fun day,” Schwartz said.
Last year, two bombs exploded near the finish line of the race, killing three people and injuring more than 260 others.