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U. boosts security at special events

The University has been taking extra security precautions in the aftermath of the terrorist attacks that hit New York and Washington D.C. Sept. 11.

The first noticeable increase in security took place at this past week’s football game with added patrol officers at the gates. According to Richard Gullufsen, University police information officer, all special events and large gatherings will have heightened security.

The University is also going to work more closely with local city departments, including the Bowling Green Police Division. “If something gets out of control, they can give us a hand,” Gullufsen said.

Although Bowling Green is not considered to be at risk from terrorism, Gullufsen said the University still needs to take precautions to calm any fears that someone may have.

“I feel when you’re talking about people’s security we’re not just talking physical security, we’re talking how secure people feel,” he said. “You have a sense that people feel insecure now, they’re vulnerable.”

The events in New York and Washing D.C. have not only put people on heightened alert of more terrorist attacks, but many other crimes as well.

“It was an awaking to everyone, especially in the perspective that there are people out there who want to hurt them or take something away from them if they can,” Gullufsen said. “People now know that there are those in the world or even in the community that could do these things.”

An emergency response team has been working for two years on an Emergency Response Plan/Business Continued Plan, which should be in place by the end of the school year.

Once the plan is finalized, each University department will have to come up with its own disaster plan based on what the ERPBCP outlines.

“What we’re instructing them to do is contemplate what would be the worst-case scenario for them and come up with a plan based on that,” said Kimberly Miller, co-chair of the emergency response team.

According to Miller, one area the ERPBCP will outline will be what to do if a classroom building is destroyed, addressing concerns such where to take the class.

“A lot of information like this is already known by the departments, but it’s anecdotal and not written down on paper and that’s what we want to have happen,” Miller said.

Gullufsen said that while the police department and University can provide extra security personnel and equipment, it is really up to individual persons to take security measures upon themselves to ensure they are truly safe, which was something taken for granted before the terrorist attacks.

“Now people can realize they can control their own security themselves by locking doors or not walking alone at night,” he said. “That’s one positive that’s come out of all the negatives.”

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