No security changes at USS Constitution

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September 16, 2013, 5:43 pm
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(NECN: Ally Donnelly, Boston) - Standing near the USS Constitution at the Charlestown Navy Yard, Naval Petty Officer Peter Melkus said,  "We are trying to keep things business as usual."

Melkus won't say what, if any, extra security measures have been taken at the Navy Yard in the wake of the mass shooting in Washington, D.C.

"We have sailors and civilian contractors -- I can't tell you exact numbers," he said, "but they are making sure we have good coverage of the Navy Yard, good surveillance to make sure it's  secure and safe."

Decommissioned in 1974, the Charlestown Navy Yard is now owned by the National Park service. It does still house the USS Constitution -- the oldest commissioned war ship -- so 75 Navy Personnel are assigned here. Duties are largely ceremonial and the ship is closed every Monday.

"We are still allowing visitors to stand close and take pictures of the ship with our usual security measures," he said.

Melkus said it was with shock and sadness that the navy officers here learned of the D.C. shooting.

"We are all just pretty beat up," he said. "We are extremely saddened and we're doing our best to work alongside the National Park Service to make sure something like that can't happen here."

The USS Constitution will be open, as usual, on Tuesday.

Tags: Boston, Charlestown, washington navy yard, washington navy yard shooting, Navy Yard shooting , USS Consistution
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