February 3, 2014 - East Rutherford, NJ - Attendees to Super Bowl XLVIII will witness yet another expos of excessive security and infringements of civil rights.
Fans entering MetLife Stadium will be stopped at checkpoints, searched, put through metal detectors, and filmed. Their vehicles may be inspected and their possessions will be limited to what they can fit into a single clear plastic baggie. This treatment has become the norm for the NFL.
The New Jersey State Police Department blog describes the process of entering the stadium on game day:
Fan screenings begin at 2 p.m. on game day. Fans will enter heated welcome pavilions at MetLife Stadium, where they can expect to encounter walk-through metal detectors, X-ray machines, K-9 dogs and pat-down searches. They are encouraged to arrive early to avoid delays and to speed up stadium entrance.
"We are xraying every piece of equipment, every cargo, every beverage, seat cushion, every piece of merchandise, food... everything that is going in the stadium has to be x-rayed before it goes in," Kevin McCabe, Chief of the U.S. Customs and Border Protection agency told Fox.
While there is no specific threat posed to the game, security is preparing for bombings and shooters. "I would list them in priority order being a suicide bomber, a vehicle laden with explosives and a mass shooter or mass shooters similar to the Kenyan mall, or the Mumbai incidents," said Ed Hartnett, former head of the NYPD Intelligence Unit.
There will be roughly 3,000 security guards and 700 cops inside the stadium. SWAT teams will be present at the game and high-altitude sniper nests will be set up above the fans, where sharpshooters can peer down at the crowd with high powered rifles.
"If you have an active shooter or you have anyone who may have a bomb. Snipers have a better angle then anyone who is on the ground to actually hit that target," explained Agent Jonathan Gilliam to MY9NJ.