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Security crackdown on bags at Soldier Field

October 4, 2009 3:41:08 PM PDT
A security crackdown at Soldier Field prohibited fans from bringing just about any bag into the stadium for Sunday's Bears game. The new security measures came after a recommendation issued by the NFL.

There is no known threat to Soldier Field, but the NFL says it made the suggestion about some information it recently obtained.

Chicago Bears season ticketholder Ed Flora learned the hard way about the new game plan at Soldier Field when his attempts to bring the large camera bag he says he's always been allowed to take to games before were sacked.

"I think it bogus, but now I have to go back to my van and take this back and come back," Flora told ABC7 Chicago.

Another fan carrying a backpack was eventually turned away, too.

'I don't really like it. I'm going to the game. It's my change of clothes, and I have no where else to put it. So, I'll see what happens," Bears fan John Murphy.

It's all because of a new security policy which prohibits backpacks of any size or type, large purses or bags, fanny packs, duffel bags, and over-sized camera or binocular cases inside Soldier Field.

"Women need a lot of things. We need our money, our Kleenex, our lip gloss. It's important," said Jennifer Gallichio, also a Bears fan.

The safety measure came after the U.S. Department of Homeland Security elevated the threat level at sports stadiums to yellow. Although there is no direct threat, officials at the National Football League recommended teams made the appropriate adjustments.

"There was no threat to Soldier Field. There was no threat to any NFL game. We just felt the time was right to make an adjustment. So, this week, we'll talk to many people and make that determination," the Chicago Bears' John Bostrom said.

Following a security inspection, fans can still bring in small purses, diaper bags, medical bags, clear zipped plastic bags with personal food, and small cameras and binoculars, which must fit inside a 12-inch by 12-inch by 12-inch box.

Bears fan Larry Forman says he thinks the change is good.

"You have to be safe and secure. You've got to be vigilant. What do you really need to bring?" he said.

Chicago Bears officials say they plan on accessing the new security measures to determine if they need to make any additional changes.


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