Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo directed the MTA and Port Authority of New York and New Jersey to surge their security presences at all bridges, tunnels, airports, and mass transit systems throughout the holiday season in New York City. In light of recent terrorist attacks and out of an abundance of caution, the Governor is deploying special operations teams from the New York State Police and National Guard to work with the Triborough Bridge and Tunnel Authority Police, MTA Police Department, Port Authority Police Department, and New York City Police Department in this coordinated effort.
Additional personnel and security equipment will be deployed by state agencies, including rapid radiation response trucks, bomb-detecting canines, an increased heavily armed presence, enhanced surveillance, and rapid response vehicles at all high-profile locations.
"New York's status as an international symbol of freedom and democracy too often makes us a target for people who oppose our way of life, and we must remain vigilant and do everything we can to keep New Yorkers safe," Gov. Cuomo said. "The holiday season is one of the busiest travel times of the year, and out of an abundance of caution I am fortifying security throughout the region to ensure the safety and security of all New Yorkers and visitors."
The Special Operations Team deployment will include Penn Station, Grand Central, Port Authority Bus Terminal, all nine MTA-operated bridges and tunnels, and Port Authority-operated bridges and tunnels, as well as LaGuardia and JFK airports.
In response to recent events and upcoming holidays, the New York State Police deployed additional resources to key transportation hubs in New York City. State Troopers will increase staffing and patrols at all MTA & Port Authority bridges, tunnels, airports, and mass transit systems. In addition, during the busy holiday travel season, the New York National Guard's Joint Task Force Empire Shield will coordinate with partner agencies to ensure increased vigilance at New York City's transportation hubs.
Following last week's attack in a Times Square subway station, the MTA has also increased their patrols and surveillance in order to provide heightened protection at major rail hubs. The MTA Police Department has stepped up its uniformed and plainclothes presence in Penn Station and Grand Central Terminal, as well as other major stations throughout the Metro-North Railroad and Long Island Rail Road network. Police canine teams and units with heavy weapons will provide extra protection as well as a noticeable sign of increased security. Railroad customers will also see surge patrols, increased step-on/step-off patrols of trains, and random bag checks at various locations.
In addition, the Port Authority has significantly increased its presence at all of the agency's bridge, tunnel, rail, bus terminals, World Trade, airports and other facilities following last week's attack. Following last week's incident, the Port Authority Bus Terminal will also see increased security presence. The Port Authority has also significantly increased the numbers of police officers, including long gun-carrying police officers, and deployed special tactical teams. Actions include increased patrols and checks of bags, buses, trucks and trains at agency locations.