Purses, backpacks banned at Chargers games

SAN DIEGO — The Chargers and National Football League announced Monday that purses, backpacks and camera bags will be among the items banned at games league-wide this year, including those at Qualcomm Stadium in Mission Valley.

At a news conference this morning, league officials said fans will only be allowed to bring to games  a clear plastic, vinyl or PVC bag that doesn’t exceed 12-by-6 inches, or a clear 1-gallon freezer bag, plus a small clutch.

Qualcomm StadiumPurses larger than clutches, backpacks, camera bags, coolers, briefcases, fanny packs, cinch bags, luggage of any kind, seat cushions and computer bags will be prohibited.

The bans are in part a response to the bombings at the Boston Marathon in April, according to the NFL.

“Our fans deserve to be in a safe and secure environment,” said Jeffrey Miller, NFL vice president and chief security officer. “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.”

The league said the bag policy has been used effectively for college games at the University of Michigan, Michigan State University and Penn State University.

Exceptions to the bag policy will be made for medical reasons, after a proper inspection.

The restrictions will go into effect Thursday, when the Chargers open their home exhibition schedule against the Seattle Seahawks.

The Chargers’ season ticket holders have received approved clear plastic bags with the team’s logo.

One-gallon ziplock bags with a copy of the policy will be handed out at trolley locations and  stadium parking lot entrances.

The team said additional employees will be on hand to screen fans for violations before they get to the gates. Single-game ticket purchasers will get policy information via email when they buy or transfer tickets.