NEW YORK, NY – The head of the Counterterrorism Bureau of the New York Police Department says a terrorist attack against the country is “inevitable” as the US prepares for the July Fourth festivities.
“I think that it’s inevitable that there’ll be another attack in this country,” Chief James Waters told ABC News on Saturday, two days before the Independence Day. “We are well-prepared to respond to that.”
Some 100 specially trained officers are ready 24/7 for deployment with high-powered weapons, radiation detectors and bomb-sniffing dogs.
Calling the anti-terror operation “ring of steel,” the officer added that it includes more than 9,000 surveillance cameras with feeds from the Brooklyn Bridge and the Times Square to inside the city’s subways, all leading to a secret headquarters in lower Manhattan.
Although NYPD officials ruled out any specific threat on this year’s holiday, the department is exercising caution against possible attacks by affiliates of the Daesh terrorist group, based in Syria and Iraq.
“We look at the global threat environment,” said Meghann Teubner, the director of counterterrorism intelligence analysis in the NYPD’s Counterterrorism Bureau. “What’s happening in the world? Are there any new trends that we need to be concerned with? Any new tactics that terrorist groups may be using that have any implication for us here in New York City?”
The police department is also looking into tactics by used by the militants in attacks from the Charlie Hebdo one in Paris to the shootings in San Bernardino, California and Orlando, Florida.
“We are constantly looking at tactics, techniques and procedures that are used at those events and how we can better prepare ourselves here in New York City,” said the executive officer in the NYPD’s Critical Response Command, Captain Gene McCarthy.
To avert a possible attack this Fourth of July, the US has heightened vigilance against potential attacks on vulnerable targets, including airports, concerts and clubs.