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NFL implements its strict bag policy London games

The NFL has announced that to help provide a safer environment for all fans, they will be implementing their strict bag policy for all 2017 NFL London Games which will be enforced at both Wembley Stadium and Twickenham Stadium.

The NFL’s bag policy, which The NFL Committee on Stadium Security unanimously recommended in May 2013 will enhance public safety and make it easier for fans to gain access to all stadiums. This policy will ensure that fans will be able to enjoy their tailgate activities in the parking lots and to do so with greater safety and the knowledge that their entry into the stadium will be smoother and faster. They also will continue to be able to carry items allowed into the stadium, such as binoculars, cameras, and smart phones.

All spectators and staff are prohibited from bringing any bag into the stadium unless it adheres to the NFL regulations as outlined below in the Approved Bags, Non-Approved Bags and Prohibited Items sections. Entry of any non-compliant bag will be refused.

All items and bags carried by spectators and staff will be carefully inspected upon entry to the stadium, which may include a personal wanding/pat down.

All gameday merchandise purchases will be supplied in a clear plastic bag in line with this policy and will be admissible.

 

Approved bags

Non-approved bags

The league and clubs review their public safety and stadium security policies every year looking for ways to improve them. The Committee on Stadium Security and Fan Conduct leads this review and obtains a wide range of information to assist in doing so. The committee strongly believed that it made sense to adjust the policy to enhance public safety and make stadium access more efficient by limiting the size and style of bags carried into the stadium.

This proactive measure both will enhance safety inside and outside the stadium and speed the security screening process for all NFL fans. The public deserves to be in a safe, secure environment. This is about both safety and improving the overall fan experience.

For more information please visit: http://www.nfluk.com/bag-policy.html

In the meantime, please view the FAQs as provided by the NFL:

How does this make it more convenient for fans?

This will enable us to move fans through our security check points much faster. A standard size bag eliminates the need for bag templates to check bag sizes. It will make the stadium’s job much easier, allowing staff to be more efficient and effective in checking bags that are brought into the stadium. There will be less time spent standing in lines at the stadium gates and fans will be able to be in their seats well before kickoff. Fans also will enjoy an improved sense of safety. Shorter lines mean fewer hassles.

How many bags can each person bring into the stadium?

One large clear bag – a one-gallon Ziploc style bag or a clear plastic, vinyl or PVC bag that does not exceed 30cm by 15cm by 30cm – plus a small clutch.  All Game day merchandise purchases will be supplied in a clear plastic bag in line with this policy and will be admissible in addition to the above.

What happens if I show up at the gate with a bag that is not permitted?

Fans carrying bags that do not meet the criteria WILL NOT BE PERMITTED ENTRY. If for any reason (medical or other) you require a bag that does not adhere to the NFL bag policy, entry will be permitted subject to contacting us prior to gameday at help.wembleystadium.com/support/home for the NFL London Games at Wembley, and on 020 8831 6589 for Twickenham games. Please ensure you bring proof of your medical condition.

If I have certain items or equipment that I need to bring into the stadium for medical reason and they won’t fit in the clear bag, what do I do?

An exception will be made for medically necessary items after inspection by security personnel and contacting us prior to gameday at help.wembleystadium.com/support/home for the NFL London Games at Wembley, and on 020 8831 6589 for Twickenham games. Please ensure you bring proof of your medical condition.

Can fans carry cameras, smart phones or tablets separately from what they put in a clear bag?

Yes. A phone or camera can be carried into the stadium so long as it is not in its own bag. This is not a restriction on items that fans have been able to bring into the stadium. It is only a restriction on the type of container used to carry items.

Are seat cushions allowed to be carried into the stadium?

No.  Due to the large size of seat cushions and because of the way seat cushions are constructed, they can be used to conceal a potential explosive device.

What about bringing blankets in cold weather?

Fans will be able to bring blankets by tossing them over a shoulder or arm. They can be easily screened carrying a blanket into the stadium.

What happens if I show up at the gate with a bag that is not permitted?

Fans carrying bags that do not meet the criteria WILL NOT BE PERMITTED ENTRY. If for any reason (medical or other) you require a bag that does not adhere to this policy, ENTRY WILL BE PERMITTED, however you will need to provide proof of medical condition and will be subject to a bag search.

If I have certain items or equipment that I need to bring into the stadium for medical reasons and they won’t fit in the clear bag, what do I do?

An exception will be made for medically necessary items after proper inspection by security personnel. Please ensure you bring proof of your medical condition.

Are all handbags prohibited?

No. Unlike some event venues, we are not banning all bags. Small clutch bags, with or without a handle or strap, are permitted along with either a clear plastic, vinyl or PVC bag that does not exceed 30cm by 15cm by 30cm or a one-gallon freezer bag. This should enable you to carry the same items you have in previous years and speed entry into the stadium for all fans because it will take less time to screen bags. Shorter lines mean fewer hassles. We encourage fans not to bring any bags, but have created a policy that balances fan needs with improved public safety and convenience.

Do I have to put everything I’m carrying into the permissible bags?

No. We are limiting only the type of bags carried into the stadium, not items that you normally bring to a game. Therefore, you can carry in your pockets or jacket keys, makeup, feminine products, comb, phone, wallet, credit cards, etc.  You can also carry a blanket over your arms, and/or camera around your neck or in your hands without the case. You can use the clear bag and clutch to carry other items. You will continue to have the flexibility to bring a wide variety of approved items into the stadium. Every member of your family may carry in permissible bags.

What about Nappy bags?

Nappies can be carried in a clear bag.

Why haven’t more stadiums and arenas adopted this kind of policy?

The NFL is the only professional sports league that has a comprehensive set of best practices for stadium security certified by the Department of Homeland Security as anti-terrorism technologies under the United States Safety Act. As such, other professional sports leagues look to the NFL as the leader in stadium and large venue security. Other stadiums have watched the NFL closely and followed, to the extent possible, security enhancements pioneered by the NFL. We anticipate that many more stadiums and arenas will soon adopt this policy.

Article written by:

Liz has covered the NFL for five seasons and currently serves as Editor-in-Chief for NFLGirlUK.com. Since launching the website in 2014, she has made regular appearances on the TalkSport2 ‘All American Sports Show’ with Nat Coombs and in 2016 was ranked No.37 (of 400+) in the “Super Bowl: Top 50 UK Influencers” by marketing software producers Analytica for “igniting conversations” between fans.

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