07/21/2005

NYC police to begin checking bags on subways

The Associated Press

NEW YORK- Police will begin conducting random searches of packages and backpacks carried by people entering city subways, Mayor Michael Bloomberg announced Thursday after a new series of bomb attacks in London.

Authorities said the system for the checks is still being developed, but the plan is for passengers carrying bags to be selected at random before they have passed through turnstiles.

Officials wouldn't immediately say how frequently the checks would occur. The checks are scheduled to begin at some stations by Thursday evening and will be occurring throughout the system by rush hour on Friday.

"We just live in a world where, sadly, these kinds of security concerns are necessary," Bloomberg said. "Are they intrusive? Yes, a little bit. But we are trying to find that right balance."

Authorities said there is also a possibility that checks will be conducted on some bus and train passengers.

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