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NYPD Going All Out To Prevent Terror Attacks

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NYPD Counterterrorism Helicopter

Helicopter surveillance is one of the many ways the NYPD is working to prevent terrorism. (Credit: CBS 2)

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NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — NYPD officers have been exercising vigilance on land, sea and air, as the city works to detect and prevent terror attacks like the one in Boston.

As CBS 2’s Tony Aiello reported, authorities have worked to secure the city by investing in technology to stop bombs like the ones that left three people dead and . The “ring of steel” includes a network of 3,000 cameras that watches streets, sidewalks, and subways, and a computer program analyzes objects and reports them as suspicious.

“Instead of watching a camera, the camera will alert and give us an alert on something suspicious happening in the field,” said NYPD Counterterrorism Bureau Inspector Sal DiPace.

On Tenth Avenue Tuesday, a report of a suspicious package brought a new kind of explosives detection dog to the scene. The NYPD now has “vapor wake dogs,” trained to detect molecules of explosives trailing behind someone.

Not long ago, CBS 2’s Aiello tested the vapor wake dog’s ability to detect a black-powder belt hidden under his clothes. He hung in a crowd by the famous bull on Broadway in the Financial District to see what the dog could do.

The dog immediately followed her nose right to Aiello, straining at her leash before sitting down to signal her handler to call for appropriate backup.

For more sophisticated bomb threats, New York City has radiation detectors deployed on land, in the air, and on the water – all to detect components of a radioactive dirty bomb.

“The idea is if they’re trying to sneak something in – they want to get it in, get it unloaded, and get it to the target,” NYPD Counterterrorism Bureau Inspector Michael Riggio explained.

The NYPD Scuba Team is also in the water every day, checking bridges and other waterfront landmarks for bombs, and using sonar that can penetrate the murky waters for a clear view of any threats.

Mayor Michael Bloomberg said the Boston Marathon bombings are a “sobering reminder” why New York City has spent hundreds of millions of dollars on security.

But he added, an aware and involved citizenry is the best prevention, so as the saying goes, if you see something, say something.

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