NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) — Don’t be alarmed if you see more police activity near New York City bus stations, airports, subways and bridges this holiday season.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Tuesday announced the deployment of additional personnel from the State Police and the National Guard at key transportation points throughout the holidays. In addition, officials say radiation detectors and bomb-sniffing dogs will be used.
“What you’ll be seeing at bridges, tunnels, Penn Station, Grand Central Station, JFK and LaGuardia are these increased surveillance teams,” Cuomo said.
Cuomo said the stepped-up security presence isn’t based on any credible threats or information suggesting imminent danger. He says the preparations are simply being done out of an abundance of caution, noting recent terror plots, including a subway bombing earlier this month.
“I want to make sure that when the public sees this activity, that they’re not alarmed. We don’t have any information that has caused us to increase security. This is just out of an abundance of caution,” Cuomo said.
But just hours after the governor’s press conference, there was an obvious decrease in police presence.
There were no officers stopping or searching vehicles, and some New Yorkers were questioning the governor’s intentions.
“The governor has made a much bigger police presence of state police in the city, and I’m not sure why they’re here. The NYPD is very competent, big force,” Christopher Calderhead said.
Cuomo called it precautionary, but chose a less cautious approach when announcing his security plan on Tuesday.
He held the media availability in a dangerously tight space between two lanes of traffic heading towards the Randalls Island ramp.
Camera crews and reporters were asked to stand just inches away from moving traffic.
A Cuomo press aide told reporters the location looked better than a larger, safer lot across the highway.
Port Authority and Metropolitan Transportation Authority police will also increase their numbers as part of the effort.
(© Copyright 2017 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)