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NYPD: After bombing, more New Yorkers are saying something

The NYPD's bomb squad check a suspicious package

The NYPD's bomb squad check a suspicious package on Wednesday. The NYPD says calls for suspicious packages since the Sept. 17 Chelsea bombing are up by 500 percent from the same time period in 2015. Photo Credit: AP / MediaPunch/REX/Shutterstock

After the Chelsea bombing, New Yorkers are living up to the watchwords “If You See Something, Say Something.”

For the period from Sept. 17 when the bomb went off through 2 p.m. Monday, 911 calls for suspicious packages increased over 500 percent in the city compared with the same period in 2015, officials said.

According to NYPD statistics, the week since the bombing saw 2,183 calls, compared with 353 for the same seven days in 2015. For the year to date, such calls have totaled 12,461, compared with 8,748, an increase of over 42 percent.

An NYPD spokesman Monday said the large increase in 911 calls is not surprising, given the increased public vigilance at a time of mounting concern about terrorism.

“Clearly the Chelsea incident had a significant impact on the increase in suspicious package calls during the period immediately following September 17,” department spokesman Stephen Davis said. “This is not uncommon when a highly publicized incident like this occurs. It coincides with an increased awareness and concern on the part of the public.”

Officials have received a high volume of 911 calls about suspicious packages after the blast on 23rd Street and the discovery on 27th Street of an unexploded pressure-cooker device deemed to be a second bomb. The Manhattan bombs were placed Sept. 17 after another device exploded in Seaside Park, New Jersey, earlier in the day before a road race that was subsequently canceled.

No one was injured in the New Jersey blast because the detonation took place before the start of the race. The exploded Chelsea bomb injured 29, all of whom were treated and released from hospitals. Ahmad Khan Rahami, 28, of Elizabeth, New Jersey, is facing federal terrorism charges in connection with the incidents.

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