RADNOR, P.A., (CBS) — While many fans cheer for Villanova’s team as we approach the Final Four games this weekend, behind closed doors at the Radnor Township Police Station dozens of local and federal first responders, including the Delaware County District Attorney, met this morning to plan for possible victory celebrations.
“We have our emergency communications people setting up a command post,” DA Jack Whelan told Eyewitness News. “So it is almost a mini-episode of what happened with the Pope.”
Because the Wildcats are playing in Houston, the campus on the Main Line is expected to be the sole focus of any celebrations. More than 4,000 students already there expected to be joined by thousands of others pouring in through local streets and on Septa lines.
“Starting on the outside, there will be detours for trucks and cars, and parking restrictions to make sure fire and EMS can get through,” explained Radnor Township Police Lieutenant Chris Flanagan. “We’re expecting multiple thousands to arrive on campus to celebrate and to be part of history.”
Officials were able to get a head-start on their planning by checking their records of how they handled crowds in 2009 when Villanova made it into the Final 4. Despite the detailed planning now underway, as officials examined detailed charts and photos inside Radnor Police Headquarters, keeping everyone safe, they say, really depends on how fans behave.
“The first step is to set expectations for students about celebrating responsibly,” Villanova Security Director David Tedjeske told Eyewitness News. “And we expect our students to do just that.”