BALTIMORE (WJZ) — A bird’s eye view of Baltimore’s ballparks. The coveted real estate in surrounding hotels and businesses is now under review as a possible security threat to the stadiums.
New questions are being raised after the sniper-style attack in Las Vegas.
The attack in Las Vegas served as a tough reality check for those in charge of safety at large venues, like Camden Yards.
Those venues are now being forced to look into extending security measures outside stadium walls.
It’s a new challenge for those in charge of guarding Camden Yards: how to keep birds fans from becoming sitting ducks?
The sniper-style attack on concertgoers in Las Vegas has prompted security experts around the country to look to the skies above major venues, including the nearly 46,000 seat stadium in Baltimore’s Inner Harbor.
“Now, I think you have a lot of organizations that are dusting off their plans, reconnecting, reorganizing themselves, so they can factor in their interior and exterior security, as a result of what happened in Vegas,” security expert Rob Weinhold said.
Weinhold says the massacre may shape how security teams and local law enforcement keep sports fans safe.
“This kind of event will shape the thinking of local law enforcement to make sure that they’re considering the exterior of event venues, so they can provide the kind of safety and security that they would like,” Weinhold said.
Countless hotel rooms, apartments, and offices overlook the Camden Yards, and while security can screen for what comes into the ballpark, they can’t screen for weapons in each and every room around it.
“How are we screening folks as they come into these venues? It’s very difficult, when you think about access to hotels, restaurants, and all of those things,” said Baltimore Mayor Catherine Pugh.
The Hilton Hotel, Zenith Apartments, and Pandora Building all tower over Camden Yards.
Security efforts previously focused on the Hilton’s rooms, with balconies and opening windows the main concern.
In a statement to WJZ, a spokesperson from the Maryland Stadium Authority wrote:
“We are constantly monitoring domestic and international threats, and use tragic events like what happened in Las Vegas an an opportunity to reassess our own security plans…and while fan safety and security is our highest priority, we do not release specifics about our security practices.”
The Hilton also sent a statement to WJZ, reading in part, “Our team members are trained to look for and report suspicious activity.”
The statement goes on to say that the hotel coordinates with police to keep security practices up to date.
Security experts say sports fans, concertgoers, or anyone in a large venue, should always look for exits, places to hide, and stay alert to what’s going on around them.