Quinn, Monken Urge Vigilance In Wake Of Boston Bombings

Apr 16, 2013

Illinois officials and law enforcement agencies are urging organizers to be vigilant as they plan for similar events in the state.

Illinois Governor Pat Quinn says he does not think there's been any warning of a similar threat in Illinois or Chicago.

"We have one of the premier marathons in the world. It's in October -- the Chicago Marathon -- so we want to get to the bottom of these terrorist events and protect the people." -Gov. Pat Quinn

The Illinois Marathon is scheduled on and around the University of Illinois campus in Urbana-Champaign on Saturday, April 27. 

"As I see it, the incident in Boston was a localized event, but we don't want to take any risks either," Scott Friedlein, emergency services coordinator for the Illinois, told the Champaign News-Gazette.

"One thing we are talking about is putting in new procedures for the bag drop," Friedlein said. "That's the bag (that) people check in containing their gear.

"We are only going to take our Illinois Marathon bags. Every runner is issued a number on their bib, and you will have to show your number to check the bag."

He said they are evaluating other options, including the possibility of using bomb-sniffing dogs.

Quinn said there was no indication that the Chicago Marathon might have to be canceled. But he said  people in Illinois have to pay attention and remain alert to the dangers of terrorism.

Quinn has been in contact with the Jonathon Monken, director of the Illinois Emergency Management Agency, who echoed the governor’s thoughts.

Illinois Public Radio’s Sean Crawford spoke at length with Monken, who praised responders, volunteers, runners and medical personnel in Boston for their efforts.

He also said that Illinois has made plans to deal with situations like the one in Boston, while hoping they never happen.

Monken added that access to government buildings and other facilities around the state probably will be a little more cumbersome today as security is tightened.

To hear the complete interview, click on the link above.