ST. LOUIS, MO (KTVI)-- Fair St. Louis opened Thursday to blue skies and no sign of rain or unbearable heat. The annual Fourth of July event is one of the largest celebrations of our nation's birthday.
But with memories of the terrorist bombings during this year's Boston Marathon, local police and first responders took extra precautions. Police and paramedics used bike patrols during the morning Veiled Prophet Parade and the fair's fun run so they could be close to the public in case of an emergency.
Once crowds fill the grounds of the Gateway Arch, officers will move the bikes there where they offer flexibility in crowds. "They are just a little bit more mobile; they can get onto the grass, they can get through the crowd a little bit easier to someone in need," explained St. Louis Fire Dept. Capt. David Neighbors. His paramedics and EMTs carry all the first aid equipment they would have on a fire truck in smaller quantity including a defibrillator to handle cardiac arrests.
Extra police officers were on hand along with bomb sniffing dogs and more security cameras to help monitor the crowds. Firefighters were asked to keep a watch as well. "The biggest thing is just the personnel being alert and looking for things that are out of the norm," said Capt. Neighbors.
As of 4 pm no security issues had surfaced at fair events.