Clearwater adds extra security before Fourth of July event

Posted at 5:41 PM, Jul 01, 2016

Clearwater puts on the biggest fireworks display in Tampa Bay, and this year, they’re adding extra security to make sure it’s also the safest.


Law enforcement is asking you to let officers know if you see anything suspicious during the Fourth of July celebration. They’re increasing the number of officers on duty. 


“We’re just erring on the side of caution. I’d rather add more people than to say then later on we didn’t have enough people,” Deputy Chief Donald Hall with Clearwater Police said. 


About 10,000 people are expected to flood Coachman Park, and that’s not including people watching from boats and beaches. This year, they’ll add marine units as well, for extra eyes on the water. 


“In the military they call events like this soft targets where potential terrorist pods can attack,” Hall said. 


Uniformed officers will be at the entry gates checking your bags. Make sure you leave any firearms, fireworks or alcohol outside the park, but you can bring your lawn chairs, food and sealed drinks inside. 


“I don’t think that they should have to worry about coming here and being worried or being scared. I believe we’re going to have the place well secured,” Hall said. 


“The security is good. It’s something that’s always in the back of my mind, but it’s not going to deter me from the festivities,” Jason Slanina, who plans to watch the fireworks, said. 


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