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Civil Liberties

Airport Style Security Coming to Major League Ballparks by 2015

Major League Baseball announced a new mandate Tuesday requiring all 30 teams in the league to implement airport style security screenings for fans entering any MLB ballpark by 2015.

Posted January 22, 2014 by William Vaughns

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Airport Style Security Coming to Major League Ballparks by 2015

Major League Baseball announced a new mandate Tuesday requiring all 30 teams in the league to implement airport style security screenings for fans entering any MLB ballpark by 2015.

"This procedure, which results from MLB's continuing work with the Department of Homeland Security to standardize security practices across the game, will be in addition to bag checks that are now uniform throughout MLB," baseball spokesman Michael Teevan told the Associated Press on Tuesday.

Starting with this year's season opener, the Seattle Mariners will become the first team to comply with the mandate. Fans attending games at Safeco Field will now be required to use walkthrough magnetometers when their ticket is scanned at any public entrance, according to the Seattle Times.

Fans who do not want to use the walk-through metal detectors will have the option of being checked with a handheld device.

Boston, the New York Mets, Oakland, Pittsburgh and San Francisco were among the teams that experimented with new screening procedures last year after two homemade bombs were set off at the Boston Marathon finish line.

Generally, MLB teams have limited bags that fans bring to 16 inches by 16 inches by 8 inches. The NFL has similar restrictions, only allowing clear plastic, vinyl or PVC bags no larger than 12 inches by 6 inches by 12 inches. One-gallon clear plastic freezer bags also were permitted along with clear plastic bags approximately the size of someone's hand.

In an effort to increase security this year, the NFL announced "unprecedented" anti-terror initiatives for what it is being called "the first public transit Super Bowl." Fans will only be allowed to enter the security perimeter for the game through one of the pre-designated drop-off points, where they will then be required to hop aboard a shuttle or bus. No walking to the game or tailgating will be allowed.

Related: DOJ/FBI Document Gives Look into Homeland Security in 2015

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4 Comments

Insert Clever Name (guest)  January 23, 2014
I stopped watching baseball several years ago, for strictly baseball-related reasons. But I'm going to be curious how much this impacts attendance. Clearly, it will go down. Whether that's a dramatic number or a minor one will be interesting to see.

I haven't seen an NFL game since they instituted the bag rule, either. Mostly for football/financial reasons, but the bag rule didn't increase my enthusiasm to go to the stadium, that's for sure.

And before anyone says that's a result of not being a sports fan, I've been to probably 25-30 sporting events in the past year.
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mr jack (guest)  January 23, 2014
I will take the game on my 4K TV in the comfort of my home over getting treated like suspect and $8 beer any day.
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FreeOregon (guest)  January 23, 2014
The bureaucrats have done such a great job increasing air travel, increasing airline profitablity and making air travel comfortable and pleasant that now they want to do the same for baseball and other sports.

The government's fear is palpable.
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Blank Reg (guest)  January 23, 2014
I hope MLB enjoys losing money. I MUST fly every now and again. But I don't have to attend baseball games.
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taketheredpill (guest)  January 23, 2014
pssh, do you realize how much money MLB is probably getting from the companies that make the metal detectors? Plus they probably get some national security tax credit or some other taxpayer government kickback for making the homeland safer.
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concerned citizen (guest)  January 22, 2014
Welcome to the police state my friends.
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