Kansas Speedway officials talk about security after bombings - KCTV5

Heightened security at Kansas Speedway after Boston bombings

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KANSAS CITY, KS (KCTV) -

Race-goers will notice heightened security for the races this weekend at the Kansas Speedway.

"We knew there'd be tightened security," Laura Vandyke said, adding she will have her eyes wide open for any signs of something being amiss.

"I always kind of pay attention to what's happening and if I see something I say something," she said. "We have to protect each other."

Speedway officials earlier this week assured residents that all measures were being taken to ensure the safety of race-goers.

"We think about what we do to make our facility safe and secure all the time," said Kansas Speedway President Pat Warren.

As the Kansas Speedway gears up for its NASCAR Sprint Cup race this weekend, the terrifying events in Boston are on everyone's minds.

"We're prepared, as we always are, for events. We've had an emergency action plan that we've had since before the facility opened," Warren said.

The plan at the speedway includes working closely with police and the Kansas Highway Patrol as well as other state and federal agencies. There is a command center on-site to deal anything that comes up, but with up to 100,000 fans and an additional 3,500 workers heading to the race site, nothing is 100 percent.

"The people you worry about are not the ones who follow the rules - it's the ones who don't care what the rules are and don't care what the law is. They are going to do what they want to do anyway," Warren said.

Warren said the race setting does offer an advantage over an event like a marathon or parade. They can take extra security measures to check those coming in.

As always coolers and backpacks will be searched, but people can expect longer wait times.

In addition to the Boston bombings, last weekend a man brought a gun onto the infield at a NASCAR race in Fort Worth, TX. The man committed suicide.

Warren said the speedway prepares for every possible scenario, but they count on the public to help keep things on track.

"We live in a time now where some people want to do bad things, so we need to think about things when they are happening and pay attention to them and if you see something, say something," said Warren.

Bent Jorgenson said dogs checked out visitors entering the premises.

"I figured it was the right thing to do with what's going on," Jorgenson said.

Bomb-sniffing dogs are searching the grounds and checking out vehicles including recreational vehicles.

"I knew it was going to be different," Leland VanMeter said. "It wasn't much different. They always check us out pretty good."

Weapons are banned on the speedway premises. Other security measures, officials are keeping to themselves.

Race-goers said they felt confident in the security measures.

"You've got to keep going on with life and keep everything going the way you have been," Brad Grafe said.

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