Chris Tatreau describes the security at the Boston Marathon as “excellent.”
There’s no talking your way in if you don’t have the proper vehicle or valid credentials, according to the Longbeach Village resident whose company, Chris Tatreau Race Consulting, has been a subcontractor for the race for the past 27 years.
“If that event can have a terrorist incident, any public event can have one,” he said.
Tatreau’s company provides the digital clocks on the Boston Marathon course.
He wasn’t at Monday’s race, but four of his crew members were at mile 24 of the race when the deadly blasts occurred. (None of the crew was injured.)
The last time Tatreau was in Boston for the marathon was about two or three years ago.
“It’s rip-roaring, it’s festive,” he said. “It’s a college town to begin with.”
When Tatreau first learned of the bombings Monday, he instantly thought it was likely that a child would be among the dead or injured.
Rank-and-file spectators only have three-to-five blocks to gather for the race, according to Tatreau. Anyone standing so close to the finish line would have to get there early, meaning these spectators would likely be friends or family members who traveled from out of town to cheer on a runner.
Sadly, Tatreau got a phone call from his wife later in the day confirming that an 8-year-old boy was among the dead.
Tatreau isn’t sure how the attacks will affect future races.
The next race his company will work is the 10-mile Blue Cross Broad Street Run, in Philadelphia, which he presumes will go on as planned May 5.
Tatreau said just about everyone carries a backpack to events.
“You can’t sniff them all,” he said. “You’d run out of dogs real quick.”
He feels “sad that someone would want to do that to our country” but knows there’s always a risk with large events.
“You have gated events, and you have events in public space,” he said. “Unless it’s a private event, it’s a bit of a crapshoot.”