New Hampshire

Local Police Step Up Patrols After NYC Blast

Massachusetts State Police and other local officials are closely monitoring the situation in New York City after an attempted terror attack on Monday morning.

The state police Homeland Security Division is receiving updates from law enforcement authorities in New York regarding the incident in which a man with a "low tech" pipe bomb strapped to his body detonated the device in an underground passageway near Port Authority Bus Terminal in midtown Manhattan.

"Troopers across the state, per standard operating procedure, remain vigilant for any signs of suspicious behavior," state police said in a statement.

Boston police said they are also monitoring the incident in New York City and keeping in close contact with police there.

"Although there does not appear to be a specific threat to the Boston area at this time, the #BPD has stepped up patrol near major @MBTA stations & reminds officers to remain vigilant," Boston police said on Twitter.

The MBTA Transit Police Department said it is also in communication with federal, state and local partners, particularly the FBI. 

Transit police say while they have no information, credible or otherwise, to suggest a local threat at this time, they will have high-visibility coverage at the MBTA's busiest stations, including South Station.

"There's been a couple of times in the past couple of years that something has been wrong, and you can tell because there is a little more presence of security," Michael St. Pierre, a regular rider, said at South Station.

K-9 units have also been present at several stations. Before even learning the news that a bomb had gone off in New York, St. Pierre knew something was wrong.

"When a dog is sniffing people," he explained, "you know there is something up."

St. Pierre said he prefers more security 100 percent of the time, not just when something goes wrong.

"I'd rather have more security than less," he said. "It's not infringing on my freedom at all. I just want to make sure that everything is going to be kosher."

Kareem Adnen, who was heading back to his home in New York Monday, doesn't think more security is a viable solution.

"I don't really even know if security will help or not," he said. "New York has a lot more security over there, but still, these things are happening."

MBTA Superintendent Richard Sullivan says the agency is not currently looking into security measures like checkpoints at stations.

"Obviously, the inherent nature of public transportation is convenience," Sullivan said. When you have convenience, you can't button it up as you would at Logan Airport."

Sullivan added that there are great efforts behind the scene to ensure the safety of riders, and that transit police have a multi-layer approach in effect 24 hours a day.

"Terrorists try to operate on fear," he said. "So if we operate on that fear, they win."

Meanwhile, Sen Ed Markey says the incident is another warning that officials must stay on alert.

"Boston is on alert, we are 'Boston Strong,' but we just have to realize that we can still be attacked at any time," said Markey.

The chaos in New York City had a ripple effect on transportation in Boston, affecting bus service between the two cities.

Riders expecting to take a 9 a.m. Greyhound bus from Boston to New York were surprised to see it was canceled Monday morning.

Thirty-five passengers ended up taking the 9:30 a.m. Bolt bus instead, which will drop passengers off a few blocks away from one of New York City's largest transportation hubs.

Daisy Sall said it's a bit out of her way, but she has no other option.

"What can you do? Have to go to work," she said.

Greyhound resumed service to and from the New York Port Authority after a brief suspension and said service to the George Washington Bridge would also operate as scheduled.

Peter Pan Bus lines also suspended service to New York City, but despite the circumstances, some riders say they aren't worried.

"Bad things can happen in any of those places but rarely do," Dale Linder said. "It's sort of a fatalistic attitude I guess, but it's gotten me through 70 years."

Both Dartmouth Coach and C&J were still running buses from New Hampshire to New York City, but noted there may be some delays, as the drop off is about a block from Port Authority.

Both Massachusetts State Police and MBTA Transit Police had the same message for the public - be aware of your surroundings and report any signs of suspicious activity.

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