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Security strengthened for Salt Lake City Marathon

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Posted at 7:06 PM, Apr 16, 2013
and last updated 2013-04-17 01:25:01-04

SALT LAKE CITY - In light of the twin bombings at the Boston Marathon, Salt Lake City Police is steeping up security at Saturday's race. While they don't anticipate any problems, they want the public to be on high alert.

The motto for Saturday's marathon is "See Something, Say Something." Police Chief Chris Burbank says there will be a dramatic increase when it comes to security.

"I live and breathe finish lines," says Steve Bingham, who is the race director for the 10th annual Salt Lake City Marathon. "People will see more police officers this year than they have in the past."

Expect to see a lot more police officers patrolling the streets. Detective Mike Hamideh with SLCPD says, "We've dedicated a lot of resources."

Law Enforcement won't say what kind of resources or how many additional officers will be dedicated to the route, but they stress that safety has always been a priority at the 26.2 mile run. This year however is different.

"I don't think anyone out there can't reflect about what happened in Boston," says BJ Christenson, who has been running the Salt Lake Marathon for six years now. "Runners, we're kind of a very encompassing family what happened yesterday was a tragedy and I think a lot of people will run with a lot of that on their mind."

While police say they haven't received any threats, they met with medics, firefighters, volunteers and organizers of The Salt Lake Marathon Tuesday morning to talk about beefing up security.

"There were a lot of different agencies represented today in the meeting and there was one goal and that's to make Saturday's event safe and secure," says Detective Hamideh.

So if you see something, say something.

"We do need the public's help to help us locate any suspicious activity or suspicious packages," says Detective Hamideh.

They're also encouraging Utahns to show their support.

"When we react to fear, terrorism wins."

Christenson says that for runners taking part in Saturday's race, "It would be a miss if we took council from our fear."

There will be a moment of silence before the marathon starts at the Legacy Bridge at the University of Utah in honor of the lives lost. All 6,000 runners registered will be remembering the victims.

"I think everybody will be running for Boston on Saturday," says Bingham.

Besides 911 Emergency, you can share tips or photos anonymously by texting the keywords TIPS SLCPD and MARATHON. You can send information to police by texting the word CRIMES.

To learn more about the Salt Lake City Marathon, visit the event’s website.