Thursday, October 22, 2009

Security Lapses At Mt. Rushmore Allow Unauthorized Access To Sensitive Areas

This is troubling news for the National Park Service, which is in charge of protecting our national parks and monuments.
Hundreds of people have been getting special access to secure areas of Mount Rushmore which are off-limits to most Americans, according to a newly released memo on security threats to the national icon.

The monument also has an inadequate security system, and the ranger force is not sufficient to protect visitors and the giant sculpture, according to a memo released this month to Ernest Quintana, acting deputy director of the National Park Service.

The security review, written by the Park Service's Midwest staff, was launched after a July 8 demonstration by activists representing the environmental group Greenpeace who hung a protest banner on the monument, which features 60-foot-tall sculptures of past presidents.

Greenpeace and 11 individuals face misdemeanor charges, but the memo has raised larger questions about security at the monument.
The problems include park employees providing special tours to friends and family of areas including viewing from atop the 60-foot tall heads of the four presidents.

No comments: