The Minnesota Twins today announced they will begin using walk-through metal detectors at Target Field starting with the Home Opener on Monday, April 7 against the Oakland Athletics. The Twins will take a phased approach to implementing the metal detection technology and expect to have all ballpark gates activated at Target Field by early May.
The increased security measures are the result of Major League Baseball's continuing work with the Department of Homeland Security aimed at elevating and standardizing security practices across the game. By the start of the 2015 season, all clubs will be required to implement a program for screening every fan prior to entry at each Major League ballpark.
"The safety of our fans is our top priority," said Matt Hoy, senior vice president of operations for the Twins. "Walk-through metal detection is the most minimally-invasive, fastest and most effective way to keep dangerous items out of the ballpark."
Fans at Target Field will pass through a metal detector immediately before their tickets are scanned.
As part of the procedure, fans will be required to remove cell phones and other large metal items prior to passing through the magnetometers. Unlike the standard procedures of the Transportation Security Administration, fans will not be required to remove shoes, belts or items smaller than cell phones from their pockets. Those who do not wish to pass through a metal detector will have the option of being checked with a hand-held device.
Metal detectors will be installed at limited entry points beginning on Monday, April 7 and screening procedures are expected be implemented at all fan entrances by May 1.
"We'll be taking a phased approach as we want to ensure these new procedures are efficient and provide no inconvenience to our loyal fans," said Dave Horsman, senior director of ballpark operations for the Twins.
The Twins will continue to enforce the long-standing policy that allows bags, backpacks and purses at Target Field. All bags, including women's purses, will continue to be subject to inspection at ballpark gates.
For more information, please visit www.twinsbaseball.com.