This weekend, the Denver Broncos and the Carolina Panthers will meet in San Francisco for Super Bowl 50. There has been a great deal of interest in this game, given that it marks a longevity milestone in the history of the National Football League. Everything from the teams, the location, the entertainment, and of course, the commercials, has been analyzed. Wired Magazine even looked at the future of the big game, with an article envisioning Super Bowl 100 in 2066, and how it will differ from this year’s game. However, one of the biggest discussion topics about Super Bowl 50 is the security surrounding the event. In fact, if you were to read a list of security measures without knowing the situation, you might imagine they were for a Presidential visit or even the aftermath of an attack: metal detectors, bag checks, surveillance cameras, bomb-sniffing dogs, sharpshooters, even F-15 fighters and helicopter surveillance.
Security for the Super Bowl has always been a high priority, but this year, following the terrorist attack in Paris, the push for even higher standards and the best technology increased. The NFL has partnered with the Department of Homeland Security, the FBI and local law enforcement agencies to put the strongest security parameters ever into place. Perfection is critical; a spokesman for the Super Bowl 50 Host Committee said, “In light of what happened in Paris, it’s no exaggeration to say that every police department in every city around the world right now is closely examining their security procedures, and we’ll do everything we can to make this event safe and secure.”* Thus, security procedures are not only being tightened in Santa Clara, where Levi’s Stadium is located, but also in San Francisco and other surrounding cities.
Security starts well outside the stadium, with measures in place to monitor city buses, the light rail system, and even the airport. A perimeter set some distance from the stadium will keep vehicles from approaching it, and spectators will have to pass through security checkpoints. All of the procedures have been well-rehearsed, with practice runs for stadium employees starting as far back as October.
While no specific threats have been made against Super Bowl 50 at this time, and the risk isn’t considered to be any higher than it has been at any sporting event since security was increased overall after 9/11, nothing is being left to chance. The FBI and Department of Homeland Security will continue to investigate any potential threat all the way up to and during the game. With the measures in place, the hope is the 75,000 people expected for this milestone event will all have a safe and enjoyable experience on February 7th.
(And because Bold Technologies is a true orange and blue, Colorado company… GO BRONCOS!)
*May, Patrick and Salonga, Robert. (2015, November 21). Security ramps up for Super Bowl 50. Mercury News, Retrieved from http://mercurynews.com