Inside the City of Houston’s Level 1 security plan in preparation for the Astros’ championship parade


HOUSTON, TX (KTRK) — There were over a million people in downtown Houston to watch the Astros’ World Series parade.

Although the official numbers are still counted with the city of Houston, we do know that the parade this time was twice as long as the championship parade in 2017.

The police presence downtown was undeniable, but behind the scenes, watching from a distance, some of Houston’s top security officers were ready to enact disaster plans.

The Houston Astros won and the crowds converged, with fans coming from across the state to catch a glimpse of our World Series champions.

“The mayor asked people out, they closed schools and people came out,” said George Buenik, director of public safety and homeland security in Houston.

As hundreds of thousands swarmed downtown, the celebration turned into a very serious security operation.

Watching from a distance, dozens of security personnel from 30 different agencies gathered at the city’s Homeland Security Bureau. Inside, a wall of monitors filmed the entire parade route as other teams monitored 911 calls.

All because they were operating at level one.

“If things go wrong, we have all the decision makers in the room and we can come up with a plan pretty quickly,” Buenik said.

He told ABC13 the weather was the biggest culprit.

“There were no major incidents or disturbances,” Buenik said. “At first it looked like there were a variety of EMS/med calls along the course, but minor issues, people getting dehydrated, people a little overheated.”

It’s no surprise with the crowds packed and the enthusiasm brimming with energy.

Aside from a fan throwing an empty can at Sen. Ted Cruz, the incident team said the parade was a success.

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