USA Pro Cycling Challenge race volunteers get anti-terror training

DENVER - Thousands of volunteers needed for the USA Pro Challenge cycling race in Colorado will get mandatory training that includes terrorism alerts.

Volunteers along all eight stages of the week-long race will be trained in spotting and reporting potential terrorist activity. 

The training will be provided by the CELL, the Counterterrorism Education Learning Lab in Denver. The CELL is a non-profit, non-partisan, privately funded anti-terrorism center. The training is in direct response to the bombings at the Boston Marathon, where two pressure cookers were used to make bombs that exploded near the finish line. The bombs killed three people and injured more than 260 people.

"We want people to be aware and report anything they feel might be suspicious," said Melanie Pearlman, the executive director of the CELL.

Training will include how to identify suspicious packages and the proper way to report concerns to authorities.

"You know in your gut when something isn't right," said Capt. JP Burt, commander of the homeland security section of the Colorado State Patrol. "Report it, and put the burden of proof on us in terms of whether it is nefarious or innocent."

Troopers with the Colorado State Patrol will also be training in the coming weeks.

Officials say cycling fans should also be prepared for an increase in road closures this year due to tighter security.

Volunteers will be trained in communities statewide. The race passes through many mountain, front range and northern plains towns and cities.

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