Let's face it, Americans love attending sporting events, especially professional football. We love the roar of the Sunday crowd, the heart-pumping action, the bone-shattering hits, and oh the thrill of the Win! However, with so much concentrated emotion and excitement all in one place, a pleasant Sunday afternoon can quickly turn into a genuine safety concern. And with so many fans seated in large stadiums, these massive sporting events can attract potential terror threats as well. With the ever changing environment, we as a nation will need to make changes, not only to protect ourselves, but others as well. We need to establish new policies and regulations to ensure that the action stays on the gridiron where it belongs, so that fans can feel safe and secure when cheering on their team from the third deck bleachers of their hometown stadium. Would you feel safer in a large crowd attending a sporting event knowing that your safety was a top priority?
In their ongoing effort to keep professional sporting events safe for everyone, the National Football League organization has implemented new guidelines regulating the size and type of bags that are permitted into NFL football stadiums. The NFL Safety Commission took several important concerns into consideration before implementing these new guidelines. They wanted a solution that would enable fans to pass through security checkpoints quickly and with minimal invasion on their personal privacy, while providing an all-around safe environment for all security personnel as well as all fans attending regular and pre-season football games. The most logical solution was a fairly simple one... 100% Transparency, literally. As of the beginning of the 2017 season, all fans may enter pro stadiums with Clear bags ONLY!
While the NFL strongly encourages fans to not bring any type of bags along with them, they have, in their effort to provide a safer environment for the public and to greatly expedite fan entry into stadiums, instituted the following stipulations upon *all containers that are allowed admittance to pro sporting events:
* Up-to 1-gallon clear plastic freezer Ziploc bag, or comparable are acceptable common household alternatives.
* Women may carry a small clutch bag about the size of a hand, w/ or w/out handle or strap, and in conjunction w/ 1 clear bag.
* For medically necessary items, an exception can be made pending proper inspection at the designated gate.
Fans may "carry" certain items into the stadium, which specifically include binoculars, cameras, tablets, and smart phones.
Keep in mind, that for the most part, these new guidelines do not represent a restriction on items that fans have always been able to bring into the stadium. It is only a new restriction on the types of containers that may be used to carry items into the stadium.
While we touched on what types of bags and sizes that are permitted, there is also a comprehensive list of items that are not permitted. The following items are prohibited, considered contraband, and may either be confiscated or result in non-admittance.
Non-approved seat cushions must be examined at club Guest Services office.
Before and after-the-game tailgating activities will continue to be permitted in parking lots for fans to gather, show their support, and enjoy game day.
The 2017 season is already upon us, so if you're a ticket-holding fan, you'll want to brush up on the new security guidelines now so you can avoid a hassle at the gate on game day. Please review individual NFL team websites for detailed information pertaining to each franchise's stadium requirements. You might also want to check out the official NFL website for up-to-the-minute updates regarding the new stadium security policies.
Pro football stadium capacities: http://www.stadiumsofprofootball.com/comparisons.htm
Official NFL Website: http://www.nfl.com/
NFL Clear Policy: http://www.nfl.com/qs/allclear/index.jsp