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Security Beefed Up In State, Mother Lode

Security has been beefed up throughout California on the heel of warnings that terrorists may try to attack West Coast cities during the holidays.

The federal government has raised the terror alert level to high, leaving travelers and Christmas shoppers on guard. Security has been heightened at the state´s power grid, aqueduct, power plants, oil refineries and major bridges as well as airports, harbors, borders and landmarks.

Officials at Stanislaus National Forest are taking some precautions… says spokesman Jerry Snyder. “We are preparing to execute contingency procedures such as dealing with facilities that may be more vulnerable or threatened in some way,” Snyder said

And Tuolumne County official Steve Boyack says just being a little extra vigilant is what´s appropriate… here and now. “With regards to the heightened alert status, to our law enforcement officials and of course to the citizenry, to be aware of their environment is sufficient at this time for Tuolumne County,” Boyack said.

While area residents may not see many additional cops on the roads, county officials say we can expect extra attention to be paid to suspicious vehicles or individuals.

An official speaking on condition of anonymity said yesterday that intercepted communications and other intelligence mentioned unspecified cities on the West Coast, as well as New York and Washington. Officials say Californians should not panic or change travel plans, but should alert authorities if they see anything suspicious.