NDP gazetted as 'special event'; stricter security measures in place on Aug 9

A security exercise being carried out ahead of NDP 2017. Increased security measures will be in place for this year's National Day Parade at The Float@Marina Bay. ST PHOTO: ARIFFIN JAMAR

SINGAPORE - This year's National Day Parade has been gazetted as a "special event" under the Public Order Act, the police said on Wednesday (Aug 2).

That means there will be stricter security measures in place in and around the venue.

The order, which will be in effect for 24 hours on Aug 9, will prohibit, among other things, the unauthorised flying of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) like drones in the area without a permit.

The NDP this year will be held at The Float@Marina Bay.

Superintendent Tay Wee Li, assistant director of the police major security events division, said there will be stricter enforcement against drones this year as there has been a worldwide trend where "adversaries will use drones as a means of attack for any event or crowd congregation area".

As there will be an aerial display during the show, the police have stepped up enforcement out of safety consideratio ns, she added.

This year, there were 12 breaches involving UAVs during the National Education and preview shows, said the police in a statement today (Aug 2). The cases have been referred to the authorities for investigations, the statement added.

The authorities have also designated the area around Marina Bay as a special event area, and its boundaries include Marina Boulevard, Victoria Street, Middle Road, Beach Road and the Marina Barrage carpark.

Within this event area, a special zone has been marked out for security checks. This zone is bounded by Marina Boulevard, Connaught Drive and Bayfront Avenue, among others.

The police can conduct security checks on any person and vehicle entering the special zone or inside it.

The police can also refuse entry to or remove a person from the special zone if necessary.

Besides unauthorised UAVs, members of the public are not allowed to take into the site items such as flares, explosives, paint, arms, aerosol paint, flammable material and loudhailers.

Any person found guilty of doing so may face a fine of up to $20,000 or a jail term of up to 12 months, or both. The items will also be seized.

It is also an offence to fly a UAV outside of the special event area in a way that "disrupts, interferes with, delays or obstructs" with the NDP, the statement added.

The NDP reserve date is Aug 12, and the gazette will take effect on that day should the parade be held on that day.

In 2015, a 27-year-old man who flew a drone at the War Memorial Park on National Day was given a stern warning by the police. He was believed to have been trying to take photographs of the NDP fireworks.

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