Home / Top Story / Thanksgiving Parade balloon inflation to get tighter security

Thanksgiving Parade balloon inflation to get tighter security

In a sign of the times, the annual inflation of the Thanksgiving Day Parade balloons will have unusually tight security.

Everyone who goes to the Wednesday’s event, now scheduled for 1 p.m. to 8 p.m., will have to submit to screening and no large backpacks coolers, chairs or umbrellas will be allowed, officials said Monday.

There will be rooftop snipers, helicopters, observation teams, bomb sniffing dogs, cops on horses and people checking radiation levels.

At least one police officer will be assigned to each block, and a cop will be assigned to every balloon.

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The heightened security is a precaution in the wake of the Halloween truck attack that killed eight people and injured a dozen near the World Trade Center site, officials said.

“Pain still hangs in the air because of what happened last month,” Mayor de Blasio said.

The Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade balloon inflation event will have unusually tight security.

The Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade balloon inflation event will have unusually tight security.

(Barry Williams/for New York Daily News)

Added Police Commissioner James O’Neill, “We don’t make decisions based on fear. We will never accept such acts of cowardice.”

Central Park West will be shut down from W. 72nd St. to W. 86th St., and concrete barriers will be placed along Columbus Ave. from 77th St. to 81st St., NYPD Chief of Patrol Terence Monahan said.

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More than a million people are expected to turn out for the parade.

“There will be inconveniences as always, there will be a lot of street closures,” de Blasio said. “Take mass transit if you can.”

“What you can rely upon is there will be a very strong presence of the nypd, stronger than ever in fact.”

Still O’Neill and de Blasio said there was no specific credible terror threat.

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“The phrase if you see something say something is more important now than ever,” he said.

The time of the balloon inflation event was 3 p.m. to 10 p.m. in 2016.

Monahan said people will be allowed to enter the event from W. 74th St. and exit at W. 81st St.

On the day of the parade, traffic along the route will be shut down at 7 a.m.

new york parades
bill de blasio
james oneill

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