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Chicago creates task force to focus on vehicular attacks

CHICAGO (AP) — The Chicago City Council on Wednesday voted to create a task force that will look for ways to reduce the chances of an attack like the one in New York where a man drove a truck onto a bike path and struck and killed eight people near the World Trade Center in October.

The goal of the Vehicular Terrorism Task Force is to come up with a plan that will include specific actions the city can take.

Among the things that aldermen said the plan might include is the installation of movable barriers in front of buildings and other possible terrorist targets. Alderman Edward Burke, who pushed for the resolution on Monday through the council's Finance Committee and introduced it to the full council on Wednesday, said the task force would include other communities and law enforcement agencies.

One thing the task force might do is to help create a list of people who pose a security risk that is akin to the government's no-fly list, Burke said.

"It makes sense, does it not, that if there is a no-fly list, there ought to be a no-rent list?" Burke asked. "Businesses that make available trucks for rent to the public ought to be aware of suspects or suspicious individuals that only law enforcement can make them aware of."

Burke did not discuss the resolution extensively before it was approved by the full council, but the Chicago Sun-Times reported Monday that he told the Finance committee that cities such as New Orleans, Las Vegas and New York have already taken safety precautions against vehicular attacks.

According to the Sun-Times, Burke said the plan could also spell out how police vehicles might be positioned to both deter would-be attackers and placed in areas where they can quickly respond to attacks.

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