Security measures at local concert venues following U.K. attacks

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The bomb attack at the Manchester, England concert venue comes at the start of the concert season here in Connecticut.

Managers of the XL Center, one of the two major concert venues in Connecticut’s capital city said they are following the events closely and are responding appropriately as needed.  They also said the building itself is currently under construction, with some of the changes being made specifically to security.

Michael Freimuth, executive director of the Capital Regional Development Authority said the construction is that is going on right now was planned a year ago and started last week.  He also said the changes include new cameras, video systems, access points and metal screenings plus operational changes, and were decided on following the November 2016 terror attacks in a Paris concert hall, and stadium, and area restaurants.

Hartford police said the attack in Manchester, England is a sobering reminder that the public needs to be vigilent about your surroundings.

In Hartford, police utilize a crime center where they can monitor situations like the one in the U.K. closely in real time. Hartford Police have detectives assigned directly to the Joint Terrorism Taskforce, the Department of Homeland Security, and the FBI, according to Deputy Chief Brian Foley.

"They were up throughout the night watching and listening as to what happened in the UK and whether it would have any implications locally,” Dept. Chief Foley said.

He also said Hartford is used to hosting large scale events including concerts, marathons, parades, and festivals and that preparations and threat assessments for each are constant and ongoing.

“You can bet people are going to be scared going to large scale venues we're prepared for that, we have a lot of systems in place to prevent these things from happening. We are not going to be a soft target here in Hartford we are a hard target,” Dept. Chief Foley said.

National Security Analyst Lew Nescott pointed out many recent international attacks have been in areas outside venue security lines, making it particularly challenging to keep the crowds safe.

Amtrak released a statement in the afternoon that said:

Amtrak remains vigilant and continues to maintain a strong security posture to keep our passengers, employees and the railroad safe. Every day we have robust security measures in place at stations, on trains and along the tracks, and work closely with federal agencies as a member of the FBI Joint Terrorism Task Force to share intelligence information. At this time there are no specific or credible threats against Amtrak.