Boston Services, Hospitals Shut Down as Manhunt Continues
By Eliott C. McLaughlin
(CNN) — The manhunt for the suspect in Monday’s marathon bombings has led officials to shut down transportation, hospitals and other services throughout the city of Boston and its suburbs. Among them:
• Around 6 a.m., the Massachusetts Bay Transit Authority tweeted that all “modes” of transport — including rail, subway, buses and ferries — would be suspended until further notice. Later, the authority tweeted, “Please DO NOT Wait at Bus and Station Stops.”
• The MIT campus, where a university police officer was killed, said that all classes were canceled. “All employees are encouraged to use their best judgment about whether they are prepared to come in to work today: any absence today will be considered excused. MIT is working now to plan a gathering later today on campus. Once we have determined the time and place, we will communicate with you all,” a statement said.
• Harvard later did the same, announcing, “In consideration of the manhunt that is underway, we are asking members of the Harvard community to remain home from work and classes today.” Boston Public Schools also followed suit, announcing that all system functions, including administrative offices and family resource centers, would be canceled.
• While police requested residents of Boston and all its suburbs remain at home, the Massachusetts State Police specifically singled out Boston, Watertown, Cambridge, Allston Brighton, Belmont and Newtown. The governor’s office added Waltham to the list of places where the people should “stay indoors with your doors locked.”
• Later, the Boston Police Department would announce that “all vehicle traffic” in Watertown was suspended. The department also announced on Twitter that “all taxi service in the city of Boston has been suspended,” though the department announced taxi service was restored shortly before 11 a.m.
• The Federal Aviation Administration ordered a 3.5-nautical-mile temporary flight restriction over Boston “to provide a safe environment for law enforcement activities.” The restriction is from surface to 3,000 feet, according to the FAA. Amtrak also suspended service between Boston and Providence, Rhode Island.
• Boston’s Logan International Airport is operating normally under heightened security, according to airport spokesman Matthew Brelis. “It’s open and operating and flights are operating,” he said. “Airlines are waiving fees for passengers who don’t want to or can’t fly today. … Taxis are coming and going. Call your airline for your flight status before you leave for the airport, which is what we say anyway, but allow yourself a little extra time.”
• Massachusetts General Hospital was on lockdown, with just one entrance open, said Kory Zhao with the press office. Access was limited to doctors and staff members with identification; patients ready for discharge were being advised to stay put.
• Brigham and Women’s Hospital was on total lockdown, said Jess Maki of corporate communications. So, too, was Boston Medical Center, said Gina DiGravio, the media relations manager.
At Beth Israel, “business is proceeding as usual” within the confines of the city, which itself was on lockdown, said Bonnie Prescott of the communication office.
• At Tufts Medical Center, Julie Jette, director of media relations and publications, said “minimum entrances” were remaining open. “Services are available for patients who need them.”
• At St. Elizabeth’s Medical Center and Steward Hospital Services, operations were on lockdown, meaning that elective surgeries and visitor access were canceled, but emergencies were being treated, said marketing director Jennifer Kovalich.
• Boston Children’s Hospital’s main campus in the Longwood Medical Area was locked down, meaning that patient appointments were canceled and patients would not be discharged, said Rob Graham, director of media relations and national strategy.
• Boston Children Hospital’s Waltham facility and its Martha Eliot Health Center in Jamaica Plain were closed.
• But six miles south of the focus of police activity, operations were continuing as normal at Lemuel Shattuck Hospital, an operations manager told CNN.