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Long Island

LIRR set for holiday weekend

Long Island Rail Road customers heading home early this holiday weekend will find extra trains - and extra security - awaiting them.

The LIRR has eight extra eastbound trains departing Penn Station between 2:03 p.m. and 3:48 p.m. Friday.

The extra service includes three trains on the Port Jefferson Branch; three on the Babylon Branch; one on the Port Washington Branch to Great Neck; and one on the Far Rockaway Branch.

Additional Sunday afternoon Montauk Branch westbound trains from Montauk and the Hamptons will not operate on July 4, but instead on July 5.

Complete schedule information is available at MTA.info.

While added trains may help get Long Islanders home earlier, commuters were advised to anticipate small delays caused by increased security at Penn Station.

New York's transit system has beefed up security all week as part of Operation RAIL SAFE - Regional Alliance Including Local, State, and Federal Efforts. The initiative includes several other major cities throughout the Northeast.

As part of the plan, heavily armed security officers have increased patrols of major transit hubs, conducting random bag searches and screenings for explosives.

Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano visited Penn Station Thursday to promote the initiative and to launch a nationwide "See something, say something" transit security campaign.

The plan is an ode to the Metropolitan Transportation Authority's post-9/11 slogan: "If you see something, say something."

Napolitano said the slogan is one of the most successful public-awareness efforts to date and highlights the public's "critical role in increasing awareness and improving preparedness."

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