Lawmakers call for more NJ rail security in wake of NYC bombing

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NEWARK -

Some of New Jersey’s top leaders are calling for an increase in security in the Garden State after an attempted bombing in the New York City subway system Monday morning.

U.S. Sens. Cory Booker and Bob Menendez, along with Gov.-elect Phil Murphy, say that expanded security options should be implemented into the rail system.

The lawmakers say that more than 300,000 passengers ride on New Jersey Transit trains each weekday and that those passengers need to be protected.

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“We need to put more security into our rail area,” Booker said. “The TSA is good at the airport, but the 9/11 report specifically said that TSA officers should be assigned…we should be evaluating this assignment to our rail systems.”

Booker says that he is not suggesting airport-style security screenings for rail passengers, but would like to see more federally funded personnel increased for the train system.

Murphy however says that he does understand the differences in security when it comes to the rail.

“We probably never will achieve that similar parity because of the nature of the different types of transportation, but I think we all need to be on our toes,” Murphy said.

Some suggestions for increased security include undercover personnel and detection dogs.

Gov. Chris Christie did order extra security at mass transit hubs around the state as a result of the attack.

New York officials say that Akayed Ullah was inspired by the Islamic State group when he set off a pipe bomb strapped to his body. Ullah and three bystanders were hurt in the explosion. The bystanders were not seriously injured.

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