While there was no announcement made over the public intercom system, local law enforcement and federal agents recently searched Comerica Park – the home of the Detroit Tigers – after a bomb threat was called into 911. The situation raised questions as to whether large crowds should be alerted of unconfirmed threats to their safety or if trained professionals should try to locate and confirm the problem before warning people, according to a report by the Associated Press.
“You can’t just pull a fire alarm and yell run,” Layne Consultants International’s Steve Layne said, according to the news source. “An evacuation in the middle of a ball game does cause some problems. You’re running the risk of causing injuries.”
Similar situations have been happening more frequently in Detroit as of late, as other bomb threats were called in during the past several weeks. Fortunately, emergency protocol helped authorities ensure that no threats were found in any of the cases, the Associated Press reported. At Comerica Park, following procedures allowed law enforcement officials to scan the grounds and confirm that no bomb was located.
“We don’t make a decision to evacuate unless an actual device is found,” Detroit Police Homeland Security inspector Donald Johnson said, according to the Associated Press. “We don’t panic. We go step by step. The thought was to find out what we actually had.”
By leveraging innovative integrated security systems, decision-makers may be able to comb the grounds more effectively for threats, eliminating the need to alert individuals unless a real incident has been reported. Advanced surveillance technologies, for example, even have the ability to monitor human behavior on their own, alerting authorities only when an anomaly is located.