Heightened security expected in Las Vegas on New Year's Eve

LAS VEGAS - Spotters, snipers and strike teams are just some of the substantial amount of resources to keep Las Vegas revelers safe on New Year’s Eve.  

In a news conference Wednesday morning, Sheriff Joe Lombardo shared a few details about security measures, and an unprecedented number of law enforcement officers and National Guard members will be on duty when tens of thousands of people gather to ring in 2018 on the Las Vegas Boulevard.

The heightened security measures come just three months after the deadliest mass shooting in modern U.S. history took place in Las Vegas.

"I think it's important to get out to the public what exactly mitigating factors we put in place to ensure everybody's safety," Sheriff Lombardo said.

The Federal Government has re-classified New Year’s Eve around America to the highest level of importance, so the police department is also getting more help from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.  The Federal government uses a system called the Special Event Assessment Rating, also known as "SEAR."

Las Vegas will receive an array of security resources on the Las Vegas Strip and in the downtown area.  The Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department will also have every officer working Sunday, while the Nevada National Guard is activating about 350 soldiers and airmen after lawmakers approved tripling the state funding for the event's security measures.

During an 8 News NOW weekly “Cup of Joe” segment, Sheriff Lombardo said the police department is also getting more help from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. 

Sheriff Lombardo on Wednesday said he is "confident every available resource is being used to make sure this New Year's Eve will be safe."

Helicopters, medical staff, and supplies, as well as an FBI mobile command post, will also be available.

“Mobile command post will be staged throughout the valley,” Lombardo said. “Traditionally, we had two in place.” 

With snippers teaming up with spotters at a number of locations, Metro Police says it’s also breaking down its two quick response teams into smaller groups. Sheriff Lombardo says Metro’s doubling its numbers and will be able to jump into action in the case of an emergency.

“These quick response team will respond and form a team and eliminate the threat as soon as possible,” Lombardo said.

K-9 units will conduct sweeps of the Strip and Fremont Street.  Metro says it will have more than 1,500 officers on duty throughout the new year's weekend. 

When it comes to pedestrian safety, public transportation buses will be used to block intersections on the Strip.
    
This is in addition to 4,200 barricades and the 800 bollards installed along sections of Las Vegas Boulevard.  But despite the added security measures, Sheriff Lombardo says they need the public's help.

"We're asking each and every individual to include the employees of the casino environment to provide us any information that will be beneficial for us for preventing any incident from happening," Sheriff Lombardo said.

The public is also asked to remember that certain items are not allowed on the Strip or Fremont Street including, glass bottles, large bags, coolers, and strollers.
 


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