NYC New Year’s Security To Be Tighter Than Ever


times-square-nycThere was a terror scare in the heart of Times Square — just hours before millions were to arrive to ring in the New Year!. Last night security was on high alert as the countdown continued.  CBS 2 HD got an inside look at the preparations, and Wednesday’s moments of panic.

As crowds practiced their countdown to 2010 in Times Square, the NYPD and counter terrorism teams were preparing for what is arguably the most famous New Year’s Eve party on the planet.

“The police department has just got it down to a science, effectively being able to put people in a very safe environment,” said Gary Weksler of Elite Investigations.

Some 1 million revelers are expected to pack the pens in the crossroads of the world Thursday night, posing a potential terror target and security nightmare.

Security expert and former NYPD Lt. Weksler said there will be thousands of police officers, uniformed and plain clothed, both seen and unseen scanning every corner of Times Square.

There are probably cameras or people that will be strategically placed in windows that will be keeping an eye on all those folks down here to make sure we’re safe.

“And again, this is done not just for the holidays; this is done routinely throughout the year,” Weksler said.

Some officers will watch the crowds through remote cameras and monitoring sensors that can detect radiation or biological agents. They had an unexpected drill for a worse case scenario on Wednesday. A mysterious white van parked just a few blocks from the ball drop site, setting off a security scare.

It turned out to be a false alarm, but it was frightening enough to give some would-be revelers some second thoughts.

“I don’t know. There’s a part of me that really wants to come and there’s a part of me that really wants to live,” tourist Geethka Dang said.

“I don’t think security will be a question to be here. It might just be the overcrowded place,” said Lucie Hoffman of Germany.

The barricades are in place. No bags or backpacks or alcohol will be allowed and once you are placed behind the barricades you will not be able to leave.

{CBS 2 HD/ Newscenter}