UTICA, N.Y. -- This year’s Boilermaker Road Race will have a few thousand less runners, but the Utica Police Department still plans on keeping security tight on the ground and in the air. Utica Police Department's Sgt. Michael Curley explains.
"In previous years there’s always been an aerial display, be it a flyover or some kind of nature. We want that airspace free for those individuals to enjoy and obviously those to be safe, those that are flying; so please don’t have any drones in the immediate vicinity if they’re not authorized previously," says Curley. "You know certainly FAA restrictions will limit the use of drones in flyover areas, so just leave your drones at home. You know there’ll be enough pictures that you can view on social media and other news outlets."
If you intend to run the race, watch the race, or need to travel Sunday morning, make a plan to get to your location well before the start of the race.
"Avoid travel at that particular time. There are a whole lot of streets and a whole lot of intersections in the City of Utica that are going to be blocked from about 5:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. or there about," says Curley. "So, if you could find alternate routes of travel that would be very beneficial to both us as the race coordinators as well as the pedestrians and vehicular drivers that are in the street."
If you’re planning on participating in any aspect of race, you’ll want to adhere to some of the safety protocols that will be enforced.
"We don’t want any book bags or things of that nature left on the road course, so if you want to come and enjoy the Boilermaker Road Race, please leave some stuff at home. Obviously bring your chairs, bring things to sit and be comfortable with, but leave other objects that may concern people at home," Curley added.
In the event that there is an emergency, Utica police, the sheriff’s department, and state police will have units available to respond.
"You know obviously in 2019 we had an incident with Bianca Devins. It was a major hindrance to a successful road race, but you know we came together, we made sure the race went off, and then we had that," Curley said. "Weather has been a major issue in the past, but I think, you know, being October and a great day, it looks like it’s about 70 degrees, and hopefully the rain holds off. It should be a great day for the runners to run, and we hope they have their best times, and have a great time running."
More than 7,000 runners combined will run in this year's Boilermaker. The 5K race will kick off at 7:30 a.m. Sunday, with the wheelchair race following at 8 a.m. and the 15K at 8:15 a.m.