Lexington-Richland 5 approves new safety requirement for fall sporting events

Attendees of Lexington-Richland 5 sporting events this fall will need to carry belongings in clear bags, according to a policy the district introduced this week.

Purses, backpacks, briefcases and other bags will need to be replaced by bags that meet district requirements:

made of plastic, vinyl or PVC and smaller than 12 inches by 6 inches by 12 inches.

gallon clear plastic bags, such as Ziploc bags.

clutch bags smaller than 4.5 inches by 6.5 inches (about the size of a hand).

All other bags that do not meet these rules, including diaper bags, camera bags, fanny packs, grocery bags, mesh bags, coolers and tinted plastic bags, will not be allowed in at sporting events. Bags with medically necessary items will be allowed in after inspection, according to a news release from Lexington-Richland 5.

The clear bag rule is the latest in additional safety measures the district has rolled out in recent years for sports, including adding metal detectors at games, conducting bag searches and requiring adult supervision for students in eighth grade and younger.

In August 2018, the Dutch Fork-Irmo football game was called early after a rumor of gunshots caused fans to panic. The rumor proved to be untrue.

Isabella Cueto is a bilingual multimedia journalist covering Lexington County, one of the fastest-growing areas of South Carolina. She previously worked as a reporter for the Medill Justice Project and WLRN, South Florida’s NPR station. She is a graduate of the University of Miami, where she studied journalism and theatre arts.