Police stage security drills at Metro-North train stationsPosted: Updated:
Many Metro-North commuters noticed a significant police presence at train stations across the Hudson Valley this morning today as authorities staged safety drills.
The drills included heightened platform patrols, increased security presence onboard trains, explosives detection canine sweeps, and other counter-surveillance measures. A MTA police mobile command vehicles was set up at the Croton-Harmon station along with other emergency vehicles. The drills involve MTA police, the state division of Homeland Security, state and local police and EMS crews.
Officials call the exercises Operation NY SECURE, and the goal is to improve coordination and response between the railroad police that are responsible for each station and the state and local law enforcement that would respond to emergencies. “We are really working on our interagency cooperation and getting the word out – you see something, you say something. Getting the agencies to work together well, we all know each other, so when an event happens, it’s not the first time we are all working together. Gov. Cuomo is big on securing the Empire Corridor, so that’s what we are doing,” says Robert Willis, Homeland Security Office of Counter Terrorism Director.
The MTA has been staging the drills every few months. Earlier this summer, they staged one that included about 10 Metro-North train stations from Albany to Yonkers.