CONCORD, N.C. -- As the Charlotte Motor Speedway gears up for the big race and an open-air concert, flags blow softly in the breeze, lowered to half-staff.
The Speedway is preparing for 100,000 people to come through its gates for the Bank of America 500 this weekend. Along with the two days of racing events, country music star Brad Paisley will be headlining a free concert at the zMax Dragway Saturday night.
Preparations and security plans have been underway all year, but in the wake of the deadly shooting in Las Vegas, more conversations are happening now.
"We will evaluate these things, we evaluate intelligence as it comes in," says Concord Police Major Jimmy Hughes. "We are continuously improving our plans."
The speedway trains for a number of safety situations, including active-shooter scenarios, says Scott Cooper, Vice President of Communications and Public Relations for Charlotte Motor Speedway.
"If we have to react or respond to something we are prepared to do so," Cooper says.
Cooper says in addition to the highly visible security precautions, there will also be a number of measures in place that are not as visible. The speedway intends to have undercover officers, bomb-sniffing dogs and hidden cameras positioned to keep watch over the event.
They also have a joint operations command center staffed with federal, state and local authorities for the entire race weekend. He says he hopes fans will feel secure enough to have a good time.
"They're coming to enjoy themselves," Cooper says. "Certainly there's going to be a different consciousness with what's happened in Las Vegas. But what we want those fans to know is that we are working so hard... to make sure we've got the safest environment possible."
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