High-tech RATT surveillance tower overseeing Knoxville Christmas parade with marching band in Santa hats

Ensuring Safety at Knoxville's Christmas in the City: Inside the 50th Annual WIVK Parade

Knoxville’s Christmas in the City is a series of Christmas events for the whole family to enjoy. This year, the 50th annual WIVK Christmas Parade took place on Friday, December 1st, 2023. With a mass gathering of this size, safety and security was a top priority for law enforcement. In an effort to avoid or mitigate potential incidents, officers implemented several security measures to protect soft targets, one of which was The RATT. 

According to Lt. Will Wilson, “The Christmas Parade in Knoxville draws one of the largest crowds of the year into the downtown area. It is viewed as one of the more challenging events for which we have to ensure safety and security. Having the ability to observe the unfolding events in real-time is crucial to our safety planning and in knowing we are doing the best we can to keep events like this safe.” 

The Knoxville Police Department deployed their Hitch-Mounted RATT tower, along with a cloud-connected RQ610 portable camera kit, to actively oversee the crowded parade street. This real-time monitoring, both on-scene & remotely in the EOC, allowed law enforcement officers to have enhanced safety and security measures with the ability to identify issues and support potential incidents. 

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