ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. (WIVB) — The Bills home opener is upon us, and so is an enhanced security presence.
Fans heading out to what is now being referred to as “The Cap,” for Thursday’s game will see a sold-out camper lot, Field House activities and a food truck row.
With all of the fun activities and pre-game festivities taking place, the Erie County Sheriff’s Office says they are taking extra precautions.
In addition to metal detectors, fans will also see uniformed SWAT team members, more law enforcement canines, and just generally, more deputies and security personnel.
Sheriff Timothy Howard says, “My office had many of the same assets and personnel deployed at previous games but after the devastating terrorist attacks in Paris, we honed the special services’ role and responsibilities to enable these units to react quicker to an incident.”
Ever since the Sheriff’s Office partnered with the Buffalo Bills, ejections and arrests at games have significantly decreased. In 2015, an average of three people were arrested and 58 were ejected at each game — an all-time low.
Before going through metal detectors, Bills fans should take out phones, cameras and glasses cases. Keys, wallets and loose change need not be removed.
School buses will be an additional traffic element on Thursday. More information on road closures can be found here.
Gates to New Era Field will open 90 minutes before kickoff.