With the Super Bowl in the books, now the NFL focus shifts to North Texas as AT&T Stadium prepares to host the NFL Draft in April.
This comes as the Arlington Fire Department is set to receive 10 mobile radiological detection devices to help keep stadium crowds safe.
Due to security concerns, fire officials cannot share much about the devices.
“Due to an abundance of caution regarding homeland security, we can’t go into specific detail of our atmospheric monitoring capabilities,” Lt. Mike Joiner said in an e-mail.
Joiner added that the purchase is required to enhance current radiological monitoring capabilities.
City Council documents indicate the 10 mobile detection devices are intended for use at all major sporting events in the city. It is thought that this would likely include the upcoming NFL Draft and any future Super Bowls or World Series games.
The devices will replace the current outdated equipment.
According to documents, the new technology is to be used to identify any “hostile radioactive source at special events or mass gatherings.”
“I don’t think too many fire departments are involved to the extent that we see now in Arlington,” former assistant deputy director Oliver “Buck” Revell said. “Certainly the NYPD and Washington around the Pentagon and the Capital and other major venues there will be some capability. But it is not something that every department is looking to.”
Revell offered insight into the likely use of the devices.
“Primarily things like hospital waste, radium and those kinds of things,” Revell said. “There are other mechanisms that I really can’t discuss for getting into weapons-grade material and those are the responsibility of the national government or the federal government.”
“At the fire department level it is primarily devices and equipment that can be transported and moved into a location to either detonate or discharge because it exposes the crowd,” Revell said.
Revell said the Arlington Fire Department’s purchase of these mobile devices should be reassuring and not something alarming.
AT&T Stadium will host the NFL Draft April 26-28.