A’s to implement walkthrough metal detectors starting Thursday (updated 9/17)

Update 9/17 3:45 PM – David Rinetti gave me a call today to straighten out some of the misconceptions about the metal detectors.

  1. There is a league-wide mandate, but it doesn’t call for a specific type of detector. The only requirement is that each park use some sort of metal detector.
  2. The A’s are using the last 4-game homestand as a trial run before the postseason. Ongoing training is happening prior to Thursday.
  3. Walkthrough detectors are being used because they’re already in place at both the stadium and arena, and because they’re faster than wands (which are more prone to human error and slowdowns).
  4. The policy regarding allowed and banned items has not changed.

I pointed out that the press release was perhaps worded in such a way that it could be misinterpreted that the walkthrough detector was mandatory. Hopefully this will clear up some of the confusion.

—–

Surprise press release from the A’s today:

A’s to Use New Security Procedures for Remaining Home Games, Starting Thursday

Team Adheres to MLB League-Wide Mandate in Using Metal Detectors

Adhering to a new Major League Baseball league-wide mandate, the Oakland A’s will begin using a walk-through metal detection system for fans entering O.co Coliseum for all remaining home games beginning Thursday night when the team hosts Minnesota at 7:05 p.m. MLB teams will implement a similar league-wide system that is currently in place for all NFL and NBA teams.

The A’s recommend that ticket holders enter O.co Coliseum when stadium gates first open to allow ample time for this new security procedure. Gates will open at 5:35 p.m. Thursday, 4:30 p.m. Friday, and 11:05 a.m. on both Saturday and Sunday.

Similar to airport security, fans will have their bags searched and will need to empty pockets of keys, cell phones and other items before walking through a metal detector. The A’s have not changed any of their current policies on carry-in items, as referenced in the “A-Z Guide” on the A’s web site, http://www.oaklandathletics.com. However, it is suggested that fans minimize the amount of items they bring to the ballpark.

This new procedure will continue through any potential 2013 post-season games, and for all future regular season games.

I’m not quite sure this is happening in the middle of the homestand as opposed to today, especially considering the fact that the metal detectors were already in place for the Raiders game yesterday. In any case, it’s a major inconvenience that, unfortunately, was completely inevitable. Many ballparks – though not the Coliseum – have already started using metal detector wands. Starting Thursday, plan to get to the Coliseum 15-30 minutes earlier than usual to accommodate the extra screening time. I’ll be back from Anaheim on Thursday, so I’ll get the metal detector the first game back.

On a related note, I recall that the two New York ballparks and Atlanta’s Turner Field used wand metal detectors at the gates. Seattle, Milwaukee, and the Chicago parks did not. I suppose it’s convenient for MLB that the infrastructure is already in place at the Coliseum, because if the league wanted to use walkthroughs instead of wands at all 30 parks, the Coliseum could serve as a trial balloon. How’s that for trailblazing?

18 thoughts on “A’s to implement walkthrough metal detectors starting Thursday (updated 9/17)

  1. Wow so MLB and MLS both caved into the hysteria perpetuated by the Department of Homeland Security and are further inconveniencing Americans and invading out privacy all in the name of a false sense of “security.” Pretty pathetic on both leagues part, helping the terrorists win one step at a time…

  2. Citi and Yankee Stadium both use wands. I wonder if this is just late response to something that was inevitable or if this was pushed perhaps by some threat regarding violence or perhaps terror threats? I wouldn’t make that assumption normally, it just seems so out of the blue, given how deep we are into a season.

  3. Nico, given what is happening today in DC, I’d say it was the precipitating event. Just sad IMO that such tragedies are used as reasoning for furthering the new American police state. It reeks of crap the Soviets used to do and is about as pitiful and un-American as it gets these days. Fear is king today…

  4. as long as they don’t become party to that obscene policy about clear plastic bags, I’m okay with this. you can still bring food, drinks (usually), most things into the coliseum and I LIKE it.

  5. Ya know, I appreciate having never been shot at an A’s game and all, but people falling to their deaths is a more legitimate threat than armed attacks at sporting events.

    I wonder if the A’s and Raider split the bill on the operating expenses of this security equipment. There has to be some angle on this, like lower insurance/liability. The timing and implementation is odd.

  6. So, last year’s ALDS games in Oakland started at 6:00pm (Gm 1) and 6:30pm (Gm 2 & 3). That was annoying because it’s sometimes hard enough to make a 7pm first pitch, let alone a 6pm first pitch during the Postseason.

    It’ll suck so hard if a third of the crowd is stuck in security when first pitch is thrown. That would totally harsh anyone’s playoff buzz.

  7. Why are they doing this? Smh

  8. I’ve never seen any metal-detector security at China Basin–wand or otherwise–despite (well, maybe because of?) the crowds. Wonder when SF will cave in to the mlb order. It’ll be a huge waste of time unloading phones and cameras into little inspection pails. Also, time to look into one of those stealth carbon-fiber flasks, I guess. . . .

  9. Did anyone else notice the A’s are using the pre-tarp seating chart for the Postseason tickets? Section 320 seats are available for purchase.

  10. And unless the order new tarps for the remaining sections, the top of the Coliseum will read, “HOME O—-LETICS.”

  11. I wonder if Let’s Go Oakland is ready to give credit to Lew Wolff for taking the tarps down, since they harangued him something fierce for keeping them up last year. That’s the way it’s supposed to work, right?
    Going through metal detectors is commonplace for every Warriors game, but you can take nothing into the arena, even a sealed bottle of water. Maybe it’s because they charge $5.50 for water or a 20 oz. soda. A’s have always been much friendlier about that sorta thing.

  12. THE TARPS ARE DOWN!

  13. yeah from what i’ve read all the tarps off the 3rd deck will be taken off, mt davis ones will not.

    • Update 9/17 3:45 PM – David Rinetti gave me a call today to straighten out some of the misconceptions about the metal detectors.

      There is a league-wide mandate, but it doesn’t call for a specific type of detector. The only requirement is that each park use some sort of metal detector.
      The A’s are using the last 4-game homestand as a trial run before the postseason. Ongoing training is happening prior to Thursday.
      Walkthrough detectors are being used because they’re already in place at both the stadium and arena, and because they’re faster than wands (which are more prone to human error and slowdowns).
      The policy regarding allowed and banned items has not changed.

      I pointed out that the press release was perhaps worded in such a way that it could be misinterpreted that the walkthrough detector was mandatory. Hopefully this will clear up some of the confusion.

  14. I’m still wondering, why implement them during a busy time like the Post Season when they can start fresh (with a properly trained staff) in 2014.

  15. Also I’d question the “league-wide” portion of his claim. Padres games still utilize no such scanners. Fans only have to have their bags checked as of this posting with no wasted time on metal detectors or wands.

  16. Just occurred to me that might be in part due to the fact you can walk in and out of Padres games as you please with a hand stamp so they’d have to re-wand/scan everyone as they went in and out which frankly just wouldn’t work.

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