BOSTON (CBS/AP) — Between 7,500 and 8,000 public safety personnel will be working this year’s Boston Marathon on April 16.

On Tuesday, members of the Boston Police Department, Massachusetts State Police, FBI, and other agencies joined the Boston Athletic Association to announce safety measures that will be put in place for the event.

About 5,000 of the public safety personnel at the race will be law enforcement members in uniforms and plain clothes, according to Director of the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency Kurt Schwartz.

He added that the security plan, which took six months to create, was based on past lessons learned in Boston and current events around the world.

Runners head up Heartbreak Hill as a police officer looks on during the 2017 Boston Marathon. (Photo by Matt Dolloff/CBS Boston)

Security has been tightened along the 26.2-mile course since 2013 when bombs planted near the finish line killed three spectators and wounded more than 260 others.

Mass. State Police Colonel Kerry Gilpin said, “As always, some parts of that plan will be obvious to runners and spectators: uniformed state troopers, police officers, and guardsmen along the route. Also as in previous years, certain parts of our security operation will not be seen by the public, including a significant presence of undercover troopers and intelligence assets analyzing and disseminating information about any possible threats.”

Currently, there are no specific, active, or credible threats against the Boston Marathon, according to FBI Special Agent Hank Shaw.

“Our number one goal is to ensure a fun and safe day for you and your families. We are laser-focusing on finding and stopping any potential threat to this year’s event,” said Shaw.

As with recent years, bomb-sniffing dogs and a Mass. State Police helicopter will be in use. Three tethered drones will be used again: two in Hopkinton and one in Natick.

The public was asked to follow similar guidelines as in years past, as well.

“Be aware and remain aware of your surroundings,” said Schwartz. “If you see something, say something.”

Spectators were asked to not bring backpacks, rolling bags, or coolers. Belongings should be kept in clear, plastic bags. Sticks, poles, signs, props, and weapons are prohibited.  Lastly, drones are not allowed anywhere along the route.

There will be security checkpoints for spectators.

(© Copyright 2018 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

Comments (2)

Leave a Reply