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Added Security Just A 'Precautionary' Measure, Says Metro

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Metro rail weekend wait times won't increase under the Metro budget approved by the Finance Committee June 9.
David Schultz
Metro rail weekend wait times won't increase under the Metro budget approved by the Finance Committee June 9.

Metro riders may notice more uniformed security officers than usual Monday. Hundreds of Metro's transit police, along with extra local officers from D.C., Maryland and Virginia, will be patrolling train stations and buses.

Metro spokesman Steve Taubenkibel says the heightened security is simply a precautionary measure after the announcement Sunday night that U.S. forces killed the al-Qaida leader.

Taubenkibel says Metro isn't responding to any specific threat, but is just trying to be "proactive" in its response.

He also says some security officers will be visible to riders, many others will be undercover.

Metro Transit Police Chief Michael Taborn says he decided Monday morning in a conference call with transit police officials from other cities that there needs to be a strong show of force after the weekend's events.

"In this business of moving people collectively, transit law enforcement representatives across the country know that this is just the thing that we need to all do," he says.

Taborn says the main goal is heightened visibility, although it's unclear who will be paying for the extra manpower. Taborn says he'll be discussing this issue with the federal Transportation Security Administration.

"If they deem fit that they will provide funding for transit agencies across the country for this enhanced visibility, then we would be ever grateful," he says.

Taborn says the increased security on Metro's buses and trains will go on indefinitely.

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