Security measures begin to tighten in Edmonton ahead of Pope Francis visit – Edmonton

Wherever the Pope goes, thousands of people tend to follow him.

Recently installed fences and cameras outside the Catholic Archdiocese of Edmonton are just one of the many security measures in place for the Pope’s upcoming visit.

“You’re going to see a lot of fences, you’re going to see a lot of different trails for people to follow, you’re going to quarantine sections for those people to be on,” said Anthony Kimakowich, president of Risk Control.

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Large crowds, road closures and heavy security are expected for Pope Francis’ visit to Alberta

Based in Alberta, Risk Control provides safety and security consulting throughout Canada. Company President Anthony Kimakowich said protecting the Pope is a major operation, much like protecting the President of the United States or the Prime Minister of Canada, and has many moving parts.

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“He’s going to be traveling with his own security team, they’re going to have armored vehicles that they’re bringing themselves, you’re going to see police escorts, many different aspects of law enforcement that help with these security operations,” Kimakowich said.

RCMP and Edmonton Police Service have not said exactly how many officers will be at the Pope’s events due to security concerns, but said police presence will be increased.

“We need people to respect the fences, if there are roadblocks for vehicles we need people to respect those things too,” Edmonton Police Service Supt. said Dean Hilton.

Kimakowich said in addition to blockages, guest screening and likely airspace restrictions, safety plans also account for natural disasters, escape routes, on-site emergencies and any unknowns that may arise.

“While many of the people are devout followers who come to see him and want to be in his presence, there is a possibility that some of the people who come want to start a protest or disrupt the event or its activities that day.” said Kimakovich

Kimakowich said an operation of this size could likely involve more than 100 security professionals and cost hundreds of thousands of dollars. Security measures begin to tighten in Edmonton ahead of Pope Francis visit – Edmonton


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