Layers of security at Winter X Games Aspen
January 30, 2016
Security at this weekend's Winter X Games is tight and multilayered with thousands of people in attendance at the venue. The first layer is a private security company, which operates the entrance checkpoints to the venue at Buttermilk Mountain. There aren't metal detectors, but those officers will pat people down and search bags, said Pitkin County Sheriff's Deputy Alex Burchetta.
Spectators cannot bring large bags, weapons, alcohol, coolers, pets, folding chairs, large umbrellas, selfie sticks, laser lights, drones, noisemakers or any beverages with the exception of factory-sealed, plastic water bottles. Also, no smoking cigarettes or marijuana.
Beyond that, the Sheriff's Office is heading a multi-agency team that includes officials from Roaring Fork Valley law enforcement, fire departments and emergency services, Burchetta said. Their command post is the Mountain Rescue Aspen headquarters on Highway 82.
Law enforcement members of that team will walk the crowd looking for intoxicated individuals or people with alcohol or marijuana, he said. Officers and deputies also will patrol the Intercept Lot at Brush Creek Road, where no tailgating is allowed.
"The big thing is public safety and education," Burchetta said.
People who don't have a sober friend to take care of them will be transported to a detox facility at the Rio Grande Room across from the Pitkin County Jail, Burchetta said. Most of the incidents deputies and officers deal with involve intoxicated people, he said.
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Beyond that, two explosives officers from the Denver office of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives are patrolling the crowd, said Stephen Shelley, one of those officers. In addition, an explosives-detecting dog named Randi and his handler are on hand, Shelley said.
They are coming to the event along with officers from the Grand Junction Bomb Squad, he said. The officers are on hand in case something happens, Shelley said. The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives has no information about a security threat, he said.
"If something happens, which is very unlikely, we're there," Shelley said.