Friday, June 14, 2013

NFL to cold-weather fans: better bring a blanket


The NFL's new security policies announced Thursday could turn out to be quite literally a pain in the ass for cold-weather fans.

The league's Committee on Stadium Security passed a measure in May that puts restrictions on the size and types of bags that can be brought into stadiums. (photo: Aaron Frutman, Flickr)

Among the list of banned objects are seat cushions, a staple for many spectators (particularly in stadiums such as Ralph Wilson, Gillette and MetLife) who plan on posting up on a hard seat for three-plus hours in zero-degree weather.

Released via its website, the league's updated policy pertaining to cushions is specifically mentioned in its FAQ section, where it cites the potential for hidden explosives as the reason for the ban.

"They are not (allowed) due to the large size and because the way seat cushions are constructed would allow them to be used to conceal a potential explosive device.

"Fans will be able to bring blankets by tossing them over a shoulder or arm as they do in Green Bay. They can be easily screened carrying a blanket into the stadium."

Also gone are coolers of any size, backpacks and purses that are larger than a hand. Clear, one-gallon plastic bags are now the preferred carry-on, much like on an airplane, though bags that are medically necessary may be allowed pending inspection. Tailgating outside the stadium, however, will reportedly be unaffected by the changes.

The policy goes into effect with the first preseason game of the season. Check out the link above for a full listing of banned and acceptable items.

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