Photo: WINK News

Pasco County Schools implements new safety procedures for sports games

Pasco County Schools will start new safety procedures for district football and basketball games starting Friday.

It includes a new bag procedure, a list of prohibited items and no re-entry to a sporting event if fans decide to leave.

MORE: Lee County implements bag ban at Thursday night football game

Tickets will not be sold after the start of the fourth quarter of games either.

The new procedures come after shootings at two high school football games in the state: one in Wellington and another in Jacksonville.

Below is a list of procedures from Pasco County Schools:

1. Bag Procedure

a. Only clear plastic, clear vinyl, or clear Ziploc bags are permitted.

b. Backpacks, fanny packs, purses, and duffle bags are prohibited.

c. Student athletes are permitted to bring bags. These bags are subject to search.

d. An exception will be made for medically necessary items, diaper bags, and properly credentialed school and professional photographers’ camera bags. These bags will be subject to search prior to entry, unless the item meets the clear bag guidelines.

e. Clear bags with items of concern also may be searched.

f. There will be separate lines for patrons without bags for expedited entry.

g. Bag search areas will be located so as not to impede crowd movement into venues.

h. Bag rules will be posted in multiple locations at each school, and on school websites and social media.

2. Patron Code of Conduct

Students are expected to abide by the Pasco County Schools Student Code of Conduct. Adult fans are expected to abide by rules for civility, and are prohibited from unruly, disruptive, or illegal behavior. Specific rules will be listed on the Patron Code of Conduct signs that will be posted in multiple locations at each school.

3. Prohibited Items

The following list of prohibited and allowed items will be posted in multiple locations at each school, and on school websites and social media. Prohibited items include:

a. Firearms

b. Weapons of any kind

c. Knives

d. Any item that could be used as a missile

e. Fireworks

f. Aerosol or spray bottles (including those of sunscreen)

g. Glass

h. Recreational balls

i. Horns/Lasers

j. Illegal drugs

k. Alcoholic beverages of any kind

l. Pets (exceptions will be made for service animals)

m. Coolers

n. Sticks/Poles/Camera “Selfie” Sticks/Extenders or Gimbals

o. Unmanned aircraft systems & radio controlled model aircraft/drones (strictly prohibited on stadium property including parking lots, stadium exterior and inside the stadium)

p. Food and drinks not purchased at the venue

4. Allowed Items

a. Ponchos if worn, carried over the arm, or in original sealed clear package

b. Blankets and/or towels if unrolled or unfolded

c. Small, handheld radios or TVs with earphones

d. Binoculars, worn around the neck or carried (not in a case)

e. Cameras with carry strap (not in a case)

f. Sunscreen lotion (no aerosol or spray bottles)

g. Banners and/or flags without sticks or poles

h. Laptops/tablets (not in a case)

i. Seat cushions

j. Umbrellas

Go to Pasco County’s website for more information on the new safety procedures.

Author: Mark Bergin, WTSP
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