NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) - The newest security measure used at the New Orleans Saints' two home preseason games will now be the norm at both the Superdome and the Smoothie King Center.
Patrons going to any public events at the Dome and the Arena will be required to walk through metal detectors, according to Superdome General Manager Alan Freeman. For years, security crews have used wand metal detectors to check fans into Saints game.
The new policy comes after a mandate from the NFL that requires all patrons walk through metal detectors to enter a game. Some fans believe it actually makes the process of entering the Dome smoother.
"Last year with the wands and the different lines for people with bags and the people that didn't have bags, it was confusing and this makes it flow," Darla Johnson said.
Fans who talked with FOX 8 applauded the measure. Terrorist attacks at live sporting events and concert arenas in Europe have occurred over the past few years, and Saints fans understand why walking through a full metal detector is now policy.
"Not saying that it wouldn't happen to us. We're just being a little protective that we don't give them an opportunity to do that so putting those safety things in I think it's wise for everyone," Leslie Keller said.
"We've got so much terrorists state side too. I mean it's not just overseas. You've got a lot of it over here," Hebert Beaudion said.
The new detectors will be used at Saturday's LSU game at the Superdome.
"Those individuals who are thinking to cause havoc may think twice about going to those types of venues because they know it's going to be very tough to try to infiltrate," Crescent City Consulting's Marlin Defillo said.
Defillo said the new security measure add to the dozens already in place; such as cameras, bomb sniffing dogs and employees perched on risers to notify authorities of anything suspicious.
"We as the public we have to now take a more protective role in making sure that we are protected, making sure that we abide by the rules and regulations of the NFL and those venues," he said. "Also, we have a responsibility to be vigilant, and we have a responsibility to report suspicious activity. When you see it, tell someone."