Authorities make safety preparations for Bristol parade

BRISTOL, R.I. (WPRI) — While Fourth of July is a time for celebration — it is also a time for vigilance.

The nation is under heightened alert because of concerns over potential terrorist threats, and that means tighter security for Saturday’s Bristol Fourth of July parade.

Thousands of spectators will be at the parade and on Friday, State Police and Bristol police officials said they are ready for the event.

Federal agents and Rhode Island State Police will be accompanying Bristol officers throughout the day Saturday — keeping crowds safe during the nation’s oldest Fourth of July celebration.

“We’ve got great support from each and every one — so we do feel confident that we do have the good number of law enforcement agents that we need here in the community,” said Chief Josh Canario of Bristol police.

During a new conference Friday, Canario said the historic parade will go on as normal — but with some visible and non-visible safety precautions. Police said parade-goers cannot bring alcohol or fireworks to the events, and bomb-sniffing dogs with be on hand with plain-clothed officers.

In Warwick, officers are reminded of the recent terror plot involving a Pilgrim High School grad, Nicholas Rovinski.

“Because of the international scene … we pay much more attention to that and going back to the arrest that happened in Warwick, it’s everywhere so it’s incumbent on us to share resources,” Col. Steven O’Donnell of the RI State Police said. “Pay attention to your surroundings. There is no credible threat to this parade, but we recognize that it’s the oldest parade in the country and we’re prepared.”

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