Police Beef up Patrols Due to Heightened Alert Level

Police Beef up Patrols Due to Heightened Alert Level

Save Story

Estimated read time: 2-3 minutes

This archived news story is available only for your personal, non-commercial use. Information in the story may be outdated or superseded by additional information. Reading or replaying the story in its archived form does not constitute a republication of the story.

LOGAN, Utah (AP) -- Logan police are beefing up patrols at the city's water treatment plant, power substations, First Dam and the downtown New Year's Eve celebration in response to the nation's heightened terror-alert level.

Police Capt. James Geier said the department will use $42,000 it has received in homeland security grants to pay for 1,600 hours of overtime to protect critical infrastructure and police public gatherings.

Federal Homeland Security Secretary Tom Ridge announced Sunday that he was raising the national terror alert to orange, its second-highest level. Ridge said attacks were possible during the holidays and that threat indicators are "perhaps greater now than at any point" since Sept. 11, 2001.

Aside from the Logan police, most local public safety officials said the new alert level will not result in major changes within their agencies, though it has prompted increased awareness.

"We're a little bit more vigilant when we hear about things or see things," said Mike Weibel, a spokesman for the Bear River Health Department, which watches for bioterrorism. "We're probably paying a little extra attention to things."

Keith Larsen, emergency preparedness program coordinator for the health department and a member of the executive board of the Northern Utah Homeland Security Coalition, said that whenever the terror alert level is raised, officials do things like double-checking to make sure communications equipment is working.

"It's really not that much different," he said. "We're constantly doing this kind of stuff anyway."

Cache County sheriff's Lt. Dave Bennett, who also sits on the security coalition's executive board, said his department will not increase patrols in response to the orange threat level, but deputies will be reminded to keep a close eye on critical facilities.

"That's always in the back of our minds," he said, adding that the top priority remains conventional crime. "We need to be more aware and more cautious, but not to the point of paranoia."

Scott Douglass, another member of the coalition's executive board and Logan's safety director for emergency management, said that unless there's a specific threat, officials won't make any major changes.

(Copyright 2003 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

Most recent Utah stories

Related topics



Get informative articles and interesting stories delivered to your inbox weekly. Subscribe to the KSL.com Trending 5.
By subscribing, you acknowledge and agree to KSL.com's Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

KSL Weather Forecast