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Both cities were clearly on edge. Police in New York were investigating two vans stolen from a World Trade Center site contractor and another from a New Jersey storage facility. Their counterparts in Washington were on the lookout for a pair of U-Haul vans reported missing from nearby Prince George’s County, Maryland, though U-Haul said one was later found. The company had no details

Police connected none of the threats to a terror plot, but said they were taking extra precautions because of the recent threat.

Law enforcement agencies around the country had increased security at airports, nuclear plants, train stations and elsewhere in the weeks leading to Sept. 11. The latest threat made those measures more urgent.

U.S. embassies and consulates also stepped up safeguards in preparation for the anniversary.

While authorities urged people to keep a watchful eye for suspicious activity as usual, they said there was no reason the latest tip should change anyone’s weekend.

“Whatever you have plans for, it’s a beautiful day. It’s going to be a beautiful weekend,” McJunkin said. “It’s college football Saturday. Tomorrow is the start of the NFL season. So we expect the public is going to be out enjoying what it means to be an American.”

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Associated Press writers Eileen Sullivan, Kimberly Dozier, Jessica Gresko and Lolita C. Baldor contributed to this report.