Twins to upgrade security by Opening Day, ahead of MLB mandate
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The Minnesota Twins should have the first metal detectors in place at Target Field by the Opening Day of the 2014 regular season, per reports. The extra security is all part of a Major League Baseball mandate to all teams to implement security screening for fans by 2015.
"It will be phased in, but our goal is to have magnetometers fully implemented no later than June 1," Twins President Dave St. Peter said Friday via Phil Miller. "We've already started the process internally and we'll be training staff soon."
Eventually every fan entering the 39,504-seat ballpark will have to mimic aspects of airport security and ditch their belongings for a second and walk through a metal detector, while getting their bags searched.
The Boston Red Sox, New York Mets, Oakland Athletics, Pittsburgh Pirates and San Francisco Giants were among the teams that experimented with screening last season, per the Associated Press, and generally limited bags to 16 inches by 16 inches by 8 inches. Security became a tighter issue in the wake of the Boston Marathon tragedy when two bombs killed three people and injured more than 260 at the finish line. The NFL recently put a limit on bags that you can bring into stadiums, with the exception of medically-necessary equipment.
According to Miller, the Twins don't have any further restrictions on items someone can bring into the ballpark.
"We have to accept the realities of our world. One of my greatest fears has always been terrorism and the possibility of it interacting with sports," St. Peter said. "You see a situation like the Boston Marathon, I would take comfort and I think our fans will, that we've done everything we can to prevent that at Target Field, that we've created the safest environment possible."