Race Officials, Wheeling Police Working Hard on Security for Upcoming Race
The Ogden Newspapers Half Marathon Classic is just around the corner and race officials along with the Wheeling Police Department are working hard on security measures for this year.
There will be some changes for this year's event, and it's good news for most race fans.
Last year security measures were stepped up in the wake of the Boston Marathon bombings. This year, some of those measures, like the bans on baby carriages and backpacks, will be scaled back and those items will be allowed at the race. The items will be subject to search but only if a police officer feels it's necessary.
"We've always felt that it's a safe environment here in Wheeling, however terrorist acts can happen even in small town America and we must be prepared so we are taking measures. However, we think we can probably scale them back a little bit from last year and still provide a safe environment for the public," Wheeling Police Chief Marty Kimble said.
Police and race officials say there will be a safe-zone near the start-finish line with extra security.
"The point we want to make to the public is this is a safe, friendly, enjoyable family environment. What measures we can do to support that and make it safe, above all, is what we're doing," Race Director Robert Scatterday said.
Both plain clothed and uniformed officers will be on hand for the event. However, they say the safe-zone will not be fenced off like last year which will allow race fans easier access to the event.