Local, state police ramp up security at summer events

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) –  In light of security threats around the world, New York State Police are stepping up enforcement efforts at events with large crowds.

Now local and State Police are teaming up to keep you safe at summer events across Western New York. New York State Trooper James O’Callaghan said, “We want to make sure we get to do our job so you can go home at the end of the night.”

Already this year some concert goers have told us they’ve faced long lines at early summer events as both police and the venues themselves, step up security.

O’Callaghan said, “We are now presently in 2017 whether you want to accept it or not, we are definitely not 20 years ago where you can just walk into an amusement park, concert or venue just as is.”

This year, the Bisons added metal detectors and searched bags at the Taste of Country event, which caused a bottleneck at the gates, frustrating fans. But New York State Police say security is there for a reason. O’Callaghan said “All the metal detectors, the people working, and staffing these things, the extra security, that takes forever to go through and the lines are all backed up, that is for your safety.”

And Sunday will be no different as thousands of teens will flock to Canalside for the “Kiss the Summer Hello” concert.

State Police have advice for parents. O’Callaghan said, “When you’re dropping your kids off at a large venue, concert or otherwise, when you have thousands of people collecting, or gathering at an area, especially when alcohol is involved, you’re going to want to make sure your kids have an out: whether that be a phone call to a parent if they feel like they’re threatened.”

O’Callaghan says law enforcement will be on high alert for suspicious packages, too. They plan to be thorough with bag checks. O’Callaghan said, “If we’re going to set this whole thing up, you’re not going to rush it, and have someone get in with something they shouldn’t.”

HE says if your kids are planning on driving themselves, remind them to lock their doors. He said, “When all of these people come out or people are coming in, if they walk by your car, and just pull on door knobs and your door open, there’s a good chance your car is going to be lighter by the time you go home.”

State Troopers and law enforcement will be out in force this summer, working parking lots and road checks.

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