Awareness key while celebrating holiday festivities

  • Published
  • By Nick Zallas
  • Installation Antiterrorism Officer
Each year many from the local area attend Fourth of July celebrations in Boston. Here are some antiterrorism awareness tips for those planning to attend.

These events generate significant local media coverage and large amounts of attendees, which could make them an attractive target for terrorists. The primary security concern is large crowds of people in one area.

The celebrations are popular for many reasons; among them is the performance of the Boston Pops Orchestra on the Esplanade and the fireworks display that follows. Boston is home to many other patriotic historical landmarks, adding to its value as a symbolic target to terrorist actors.

Mass transit systems are also an attractive target to terrorists. Be aware of suspicious activity particularly in the Esplanade area, on surrounding streets and throughout the transit system. Notify police if you see anything suspicious. The large number of people entering and traveling throughout the city will strain the public transit system.

Prominent Fourth of July celebrations around the country may also represent other possible targets for terrorists.

Increased security precautions may result in spectators standing in lines for prolonged periods of time. This could result in a variety of medical conditions including fainting, back and leg pain, or other muscle and circulation problems.

Additionally, heat with humidity may be a significant threat to public health for spectators. This could result in overheating that may lead to dehydration so take appropriate precautions.

Among the most likely weather threats are severe thunderstorms. Any severe weather threat carries the potential for event disruptions, panic, mass people exiting the area at once as well as possible injuries.

If you witness any suspicious activities on Hanscom AFB or in your local community, take the time to report them through the Air Force Eagle Eyes Program by contacting the Air Force Office of Special Investigations at 781-225-3937 or by contacting the Base Defense Operations Center at 781-225-5000.

For further information on antiterrorism, contact the Antiterrorism Office at 781-225-1323.