NYPD’s counterterrorism marine unit beefs up security as UN General Assembly gets underway

NEW YORK -- The 73rd annual United Nations General Assembly kicks off Tuesday and world leaders have started to trickle into New York City, with the bigger names, like President Trump coming into town next week, all to discuss issues on a global scale.

PIX11's Jennifer Bisram went for a ride along the East River with the NYPD’s counterterrorism marine unit as the department beefs up security.

“Our primary focus is proactive security of the water around the UN itself," said Sgt. Harold Salters, who works with the NYPD's Counterterrorism Maritime Unit.

The department's marine unit patrols about 650-square miles of water in the city all-year round.

But their focus the next two weeks, while world leaders are in town, will be security on the water around the United Nations.

“On the water we have choke points - anything that enters in and out of the security zone - we screen those vessels coming in and out and make sure there are no explosives," Salters said.

There are three NYPD counterterrorism vessels and each one is equipped with a special radiation detection system.

“This system was built specifically for NYPD counterterrorism maritime unit. It's the most sensitive radiation detection system on the water, no other agency or military has this system,'" Salters said. "We’re looking for a dirty bomb on the water.”

According to the NYPD, as presidents, prime ministers and other dignitaries are ferried back and forth from where they are staying to the UN on the city's East Side, they will be safe, and so will New Yorkers.