Millions of fans visit sports stadiums across the country yearly. Event experience is usually top of mind for fans, but for security personnel, safety is one of the utmost important aspects of enjoying a sporting event. Without appropriate perimeter security, people could be unknowingly walking into a danger zone. It is security’s job to protect life and property with appropriate measures in place.

The athletes, their coaches, other team staff, arena staff and vendors are just as important as the fans to the security team. Each and every person at the event should have the same peace of mind when they walk from the parking lot and into the building, knowing their safety has been vetted through thorough specialized security operations. A certain level of trust is given to the security team when spectators enter the venue so they can enjoy the event without the threat of violence.

There are many factors to consider when trying to decide how to win at perimeter security at a sporting event. This article does not encompass all factors of a perimeter security plan, but will highlight two specific perimeter security features: walk through metal detectors and hand held metal detecting wands.

Basics of Perimeter Security

Nothing is basic about perimeter security. It is in place to protect outside threats from entering crowded, high-profile, targeted areas. Protection of spectators, players, staff, owners, vendors and anyone else within the perimeter is happening behind the scenes and right in front of your very eye before, during and after the event.

To the fans, going through security should be a seamless process of moving them to their ticketed event in a timely and efficient manner. When perimeter security is shown as being used proficiently, criminals will think twice about entering the facility and will, more times than not, avoid being a threat to the sporting event.

With every venue being different, each approach to perimeter security must be unique. Comprehensive plans must be in place to cover every public and private entrance and exit, loading docks, vehicle gates, delivery areas and so on. External perimeter security and easily detecting weapons should be a main focus as it is ground level, where the typical threat would enter.

Venue and Crowd Size

When deciding what is best for your venue, you need to first think about your specific situation. Do you have a single place where guests will always enter your venue or are there multiple entry points? Does this also depend on crowd size? If so, then you may need something that is not a permanent fixture.  Additionally, the design of the entrance locations within the building are an important part of the perimeter security decision making process. Are the entrance gates indoors or outdoors, or both? If outside, will the perimeter security equipment used be facing harsh weather elements such as heat, rain or snow?

As far as crowd size goes, knowing about how many guests will visit your venue during any given event is important. You want to make sure there are enough security stations, personnel and the equipment is up to par with scanning that many bodies. Additionally, no one wants to wait for an hour in the security line prior to even watching the event they have a ticket for. So making sure your security equipment can handle the high level of security you want to obtain versus the high number of guests in attendance is vital.

Sometimes a combination of perimeter security equipment is the best decision to provide flexibility in configuration for different flows of foot traffic entering into a venue. The most common perimeter security features you will experience at a sporting event are walk through metal detectors and hand held metal detecting wands. These two security items work together to identify metal objects such as guns, knives and other weapons on a person. They are two of the most efficient and effective ways to thoroughly vet incoming people in a timely manner. Luckily, Entra Turnstiles of the Tamis Corporation, one of the leading providers of perimeter security, specializes in these products. With over 30 years of experience, we can provide you with a solution to meet your needs.

Walk Through Metal Detectors

Walk through metal detectors provide security at access points and are quite common at sporting venues. They have been used for years at professional and collegiate venues and are now becoming just as common at high school events too.

Metal detectors play a vital role in perimeter security as they act as a gate from the outside public space to the inside of the building you are entering. They allow for quick identification of metal objects potentially entering the facility. The machine uses microprocessor technology to detect when a metal object is trying to enter the facility on an attendee.

There are two kinds of walk through metal detecting systems; a single zone detecting system or a multi-zone system.

Single Zone Metal Detectors

  • The CS 5000 Walk-Through Metal Detector is the most economical and effective walk-through metal detector in the industry.
  • The MS 3500 Walk Through Metal Detector is designed to withstand all types of weather conditions and rough handling. It also offers uniform coverage, excellent sensitivity, stability and noise rejection for more precise target evaluation.

Multi-Zone Metal Detectors

  • The MT 5500 Walk-Through Metal Detector provides maximum throughput with exceptional scanning technology—locating metal targets on the left, right or center of its archway. The popular MT 5500 meets the demanding needs of security professionals worldwide who trust its ability to maintain patron flow rate with minimal alarms.
  • The Enhanced Pinpoint Walk-Through Metal Detector is the industry leader in pinpointing technology. Without compromising security, this metal detector is designed for maximum throughput.

How the Walk Through Metal Detector Works

With multiple identifying pinpoints on both kinds of machines, attendees are scanned from head to toe, ensuring specific dangerous objects are not in their possession. The biggest difference between the two systems is that the metal object can be specifically located from any direction on the person with the multi-zone system.

If the walk through metal detector senses metal, it will quickly alert security personnel using an audio or visual signal. The security personnel will then follow their protocol to address the situation. Typically, the next step would be for the security personnel to use a hand held metal detecting wand to find specifically where the object is and search for the threat on the person.

Hand Held Metal Detecting Wands

Hand held metal detecting wands are used to pinpoint where a metal object is on a person. When used in conjunction with walk through metal detectors, security personnel will be able to quickly find the threat.

Hand held metal detecting wands can also be used separately from walk through metal detectors. Hand held wands are not semi-permanent fixtures like walk through metal detectors, so they can easily be moved anywhere in the sporting arena. They are lightweight, easy to use and highly effective in identifying metal objects.

Types of Hand Helds

  • The Pro-Pointer Metal Detector provides all terrain versatility for locating and pinpointing metallic targets. It is environmentally protected from the elements and is fully submersible to a maximum depth of 20 feet.
  • The Super Scanner V Hand-Held Metal Detector is the original maximum sensitivity hand-held scanner for high security applications. It features audible and silent vibrating alarm options and extended battery life.
  • The Super Wand Hand-Held Metal Detector has a 360° detection field that provides uniform sensitivity and tip pinpointing to detect weapons and other metal objects with extreme accuracy.
  • The Tactical Hand-held Metal Detector is the most rugged, compact metal detector on the market. With a highly-sensitive 360° detection area and a silent vibrating alarm indicator, the Tactical Hand-held Metal Detector is perfect for all law enforcement operations.

Winning at Perimeter Security

Memories of what happens at a sporting event should be what takes place on the field, not off the field. Perimeter security is a huge task but is something that should never be overlooked. The safety and security of everyone should be kept at the forefront of daily discussions. Always remember the fan experience starts with perimeter security. As they pass through your metal detectors, they are passing through the gates to an ultimate experience. Ensure they enjoy their time at your venue by ensuring your perimeter security is the best of the best.

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