HPD prepared to protect thousands at Astros parade

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- Houston police said it is ready for Friday's victory parade, but they have a new warning for fans.

More screaming Astros fans are expected in downtown Friday.

Unlike Wednesday night's Minute Maid Park crowd of nearly 20,000, law enforcement is preparing to protect more than half a million.

"You're going to see us be much more visible," Houston Police Department Chief Art Acevedo said. "We may be a lot more visible in terms of the type of armor we're going to be wearing, and the weapons we're going to be carrying so we can stop any threat."

One of those threats includes large vehicles.

On Tuesday, eight people were killed in New York City when a truck drove onto a bike path.

"If you see somebody, especially someone sitting in a large vehicle, or truck, that doesn't appear to have a reason, or not loading or unloading. They don't appear to have a purpose to be there, call 911," Acevedo said.

Another thing to know, parade route streets close at 1 p.m.

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Traffic preparations underway for Friday's parade.

But don't be surprised if that doesn't happen at once.

"We're closing them incrementally to take care of what we need to take care of to have a very secure, safe and fun event," Houston Mayor's Office of Special Events Executive Director Susan Christian said.

After so many turned out to Minute Maid Park, city leaders say it's possible 750,000 people will attend the parade.

A large number to keep safe, but the city is confident it will do just that so fans can enjoy their championship.

"I know that would just be crazy for Chief Acevedo and Houston Fire Department Chief Sam Pena, Mayor Sylvester Turner said. "But this one is personal."

Officers advise fans leave large bags at home.

They also suggest bringing a cell phone, in case you see something out of place and can call 911.

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