Dozens of WNY students studying abroad in England safe following Manchester attack


BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — Crowds ran from the Manchester arena after a suicide bomber blew himself up, killing at least 22 people and injuring 59 people.

“What’s disconcerting about this attack is the fact that they did use a proven method which was to attack people in a natural area of concentration and the sophistication of the bomb,” said Steven MacMartin, Medaille College Homeland Security Program Sirector.

Homeland Security Expert Steven MacMartin says the attacker was sophisticated in the location of his attack, and he believes it took more than one person to carry out.

“They used a place that was a natural choke point which was an exit where people were coming out which concentrated the number of people and made the attack more effective,” said MacMartin.

Governor Andrew Cuomo stepped up security and patrols at high profile locations throughout the state following the attack.

“Well security is already raised to a certain level here anyway just as it was in England. England is on their second highest level of terror alert prior to this bombing. It’s a level of security that you can’t maintain for a long amount of time,” said MacMartin.

Dozens of Western New York students are studying abroad in England. In a statement Niagara University says 36 students are studying abroad in London, and they are all safe.

A University at Buffalo official also says 66 UB students are currently in the UK or Europe. None that the University is aware of were in Manchester during the attack.

“If my child was in Europe, almost anywhere in Europe at this moment I would worry,” said MacMartin.

MacMartin says when you’re at a place like an arena, avoid the choke points or places with large concentrations of people like the entrance. He says it’s a good idea to arrive to these events early to avoid crowds and avoid potentially dangerous situations.

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