Security heightened during Relays

Story by James Jolly

Photo by Luke Nankivell

security_luke-w2000-h2000The Drake Relays is one of the largest and most beloved track and field events in the United States.

In its 105-year history, the Relays have hosted a range of athletes, from high school hopefuls to Olympians, and every year, they manage to draw swaths of fans.

Last year, the Relays saw 45,838 people enter the stadium during the four-day event.

With the large number of people visiting Drake in such a condensed and somewhat-chaotic fashion, security is always a top priority.

With the  increase of spectators, athletes and tourists in and around campus, security concerns rise. But Drake won’t be caught off guard.

The security professionals here at Drake have stepped up to meet the demands of Relays.

This year, like many years in the past, they have implemented extra rules and regulations for visitors and students.

One such precaution is the locked-door policy.

Starting April 24 and ending April 27, all doors in all residence halls will be locked at all times.

In addition, all guests are required to fill out a visitor’s pass and keep a copy of it with them at all times.

One particular rule might cue some resistance from the Drake students.

The open-container law, which goes into effect during Street Painting and Drake Relays, will force anyone entering a residence hall to empty any non-sealed containers.

This is to prevent any illicit drinks from entering the residence halls.

Students in the first-year residence halls are worried this will be more trouble than it is worth.

“I don’t want to have to empty my water bottle because someone else wants to drink,” said Sarah Adams, a Crawford Hall resident.

But the Relays are not the only time security is a concern.

Throughout the school year, Drake Public Safety is always on patrol.

Alex LaMarche, a first-year, has always felt the presence of Drake Public Safety.

“I think that the security here is doing a fine job. When you need them, they are there at a moment’s notice,” Lamarche said. “I have seen Drake patrols plenty of times, but usually in more populated sections. In the less safe areas a few block of campus, I don’t see as many cars. Personally, I have never feared for my security, but I have heard stories of muggings.“

In response to recent security concerns and the increasing ease of technology, Drake Public Safety has developed a phone app that acts as a personal emergency beacon.

Scott Law, head of public safety at Drake, introduced the app “Rave Guardian.”

The app features a panic button, a GPS tracker and an anonymous tip-off button.

“Don’t worry,” Law said. “The GPS is only active when you want it to be. We cannot track your position unless you allow us to.”

One Comment

  1. I was just telling my Drake Relays record holding student athlete graduate (while we were in Vegas) we need to attend Drake Relays one day as spectators!!!! I still watch her record breaking video!!! hahahaha