Surrey RCMP are preparing for upcoming major events with new vigour after two bombs were detonated at the Boston Marathon on Monday.
Three people were killed and 175 injured, 17 of whom are in critical condition after two bombs went off near the finish line of the iconic marathon. The explosives were packed with shrapnel, designed to inflict as much damage as possible.
The moment news broke of the event, Surrey RCMP intelligence officers were on high alert, readying for large events coming to this city, such as Surrey’s International World Music Marathon in September and this weekend’s Vaisakhi parade, which will draw near 200,000 people to the streets of Newton.
“As a result of this (Boston bombing), we’re watching very closely,” said Surrey RCMP Sgt. Drew Grainger (left). “We’re in close contact, more than ever before… with the intelligence community, locally as well as internationally.”
Officials in Boston said there were no indications prior to the marathon that there would be any threat.
Grainger, whose job it is to ensure smooth-running policing for Surrey’s major events, said that’s a terrible scenario.
“It’s your worst nightmare,” Grainger said.
Despite the lack of any prior knowledge, Surrey’s intelligence community went into high gear on Monday.
“After what happened in Boston, we immediately put that machine into motion,” Grainger said. “We were in touch with our intelligence community right away, we made some operational adjustments to the plan we have for Vaisakhi to change some of the tactics we would be using.”
Some of those tactics will mean a larger police presence at the parade.
“We’re good at these major events,” Grainger said, adding the events in Surrey get bigger every year, adding they have come to be known throughout the region as safe and peaceful festivities.
The Vaisakhi celebration is scheduled for Saturday, April 20 starting at 9:30 a.m. at the Gurdwara Dashmesh Darbar Temple, at 12885 85 Ave.