In the wake of the Boston Marathon bombings, race director Bill Burke is looking ahead to this weekend’s Ironman Triathlon in New Orleans.
Scenes from the Boston Marathon bombings are topping headlines; and for race director Bill Burke, concerns are top of mind about this weekend’s Ironman Triathlon in New Orleans.
“2-thousand athletes, 4-thousand spectators all in a very crowded space,” Burke said. “Athletes are bringing in personal bags with clothing items.” “That makes me a little nervous.”
Nervous he says – because unlike major sporting events staged in a stadium or arena, triathlons and marathons are open events that span dozens of miles.
Burke knows the possibility of a terrorist threat is real.
“It’s kind of tough to stop,” Burke said.
In the wake of the Boston bombings, local authorities have a heightened sense of awareness.
They’re beefing up security for this weekend’s Ironman; as well as looking ahead to other scheduled events.
“We work with of course members of the New Orleans Police Department, members of the Levee Board Police Department, members of City Park Police Department, State Police, water safety, dive team, paramedics, and New Orleans EMS,” Burke explained.
Burke says they’re doing all they can to keep participants and the public safe this weekend.
Now it’s time to do your part.
“Watch where you’re going.” “Look for anything that’s odd,” Burke said. “Certainly have fun; we don’t want you to not have fun and enjoy yourself.”
Burke says Homeland Security is involved with security plans for this weekend’s triathlon.
We wouldn’t go into details, but said bomb sniffing dogs may be part of the plan.