MBTA Urges Riders To Ditch Their Bags When Going to Gillette Stadium
Staff from the MBTA Commuter Rail want riders to get on board with the New England Patriots’ new policy on what types of bags and other items are allowed into the Foxborough facility on game days.
Ahead of this Friday’s match scheduled at Gillette Stadium, commuters that utilize the special “football trains” from Boston to the field were “urged” to limit what they bring on board, since there is no place to store belongings now that the Patriots have adapted the NFL’s latest bag ban.
According to the NFL’s new rules, which prohibits most handbags, backpacks and purses in the stadium, bag storage is not available at the location. Because of that, the T is telling people to leave all bags and backpacks at home, unless they fall under the specific guidelines, such as being see-through, small containers or specialty purses or clutch bags. “There is no storage available at Gillette Stadium for items that do not meet NFL requirements. No personal items may be left on trains during games. In addition, there is no storage available at commuter rail stations. The recommendation comes in response to NFL limitations on the size and types of bags that are allowed in NFL stadiums,” Commuter Rail officials said in a statement.
Purses larger than a clutch bag, coolers, briefcases, backpacks, diaper bags, fanny packs, cinch bags, seat cushions, luggage, computer bags, and camera bags are just some of the items that are now prohibited from the stadium on game days.
Fans with prohibited items will not be allowed access to entering the stadium plaza, gates, or queue lines, according to officials. A separate entrance will be set up for fans carrying bags containing medically necessary items.
The NFL announced the new policy back in June, and was met by skepticism and harsh criticism from fans all across the country, including New England.
NFL officials tried to soften the blow by telling spectators that the implementation was the league’s effort to provide extra safety for people, and also speed up the entry process to venues everywhere. “Public safety is our top priority. This will make the job of checking items much more efficient and effective. We will be able to deliver a better and quicker experience at the gates and also provide a safer environment. We appreciate our fans’ cooperation,” said Jeffrey Miller, NFL vice president and chief security officer in a statement at the time of the announcement.
The policy change begins Friday, August 16, as the Patriots take on the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in their 2013 preseason home opener.