Who’s At Risk?

I just want to reiterate something I touched upon in yesterday’s post. I’ve skimmed through hundreds of news stories about the Boston Marathon bombings in the past two days, and while it is clear that some of those taken to area hospitals were runners, the vast majority of the injured were spectators.

This disturbs me, as I am also reading a lot of stories about runners who insist the attack will not affect their future races. None of them was asked if they still want their families and friends waiting for them at the finish line.

If the bomber had wanted to specifically target runners, he would have planted the devices in Hopkinton, or somewhere else along the route. The finish line might be the most secure place for runners along the entire 26.2 miles. The video of the first blast shows that only one runner was affected by it, and he immediately got up and finished the race.

Stories are already appearing that ask about security and the future of marathons. But in terms of the bombing itself, there was nothing special about the marathon. It was an event that by its nature called for a large number of people to be placed in very close proximity, and allowed for the anonymity needed to simply drop the device at one’s feet.  It could have been a shopping mall, a movie theater or an amusement park instead.

I’m going on about this because we are the increased security measure. Nothing is foolproof, but being observant is something we can all do. Even if it doesn’t prevent a tragedy, it can greatly help in catching the perpetrator and preventing future tragedies. It can happen even now. Someone knows this guy, and he’s more worried about that than he is about the FBI pulling his DNA off of a pressure cooker. Remember the Unabomber?

So runner or spectator, keep your eyes open and be aware of your surroundings. It will go a longer way to keeping you and your loved ones safe than just about anything else.