F-15 fighter jets on standby, helicopters buzzing over the streets, K-9 units treading the sidewalk and rooftops covered with sharpshooters.
While this may sound like the middle of a war zone, in fact this is all taking place in San Jose, California, as the city prepares to host the biggest event in American sport.
Super Bowl 50 arrives at the Levi’s Stadium in just 11 days, and local, regional and federal security officials are taking no chances when it comes to keeping people safe.
An estimated 70,000 people are expected to make their way to the Levi’s Stadium for the game, while thousands more will gather in bars around the city.
According to CBS San Francisco, strict no-fly zones will be in place around the stadium during the game, enforced by the U.S. Air Force and the California Air National Guard.
Over the course of the next week, F-15 pilots with the National Guard will be flying training missions designed at intercepting aircraft that violate the no-go area.
On game day, those pilots will be ready to scramble should any aircraft stray within ten nautical miles of the Levi’s Stadium.
Meanwhile, police K-9 units have been taking part in training to familiarize the dogs to the sound of helicopters, which will also be on standby during the event.
According to U.S. Park Police Officer Neil Wu, should there be an emergency on the streets during the game, helicopters may be used to ferry teams to and from the stadium.
This is potentially a problem for bomb-sniffing dogs that will be deployed at transport hubs and on the streets of San Jose.
Wu said: ‘One of the first steps in providing security for the Super Bowl is getting the dogs familiarized with the helicopters noise vibrations and seeing how they behave around it.
‘It’s better to find out how the dogs handle it now than later.’
Security on the streets will also be high, as authorities take lessons from the Paris attacks in December last year, in which the Stade de France was targeted by three suicide bombers.
While officials will not disclose specific details on what to expect on game-day, the San Jose Mercury reports that dogs, metal detectors, and high-tech cameras will all play a part.
Around the stadium itself, concentric circles of security will be put in place with walk-through metal detectors and officers searching bags.
Jeff Miller, the NFL’s head of security, told the publication that the top priority was to ‘keep weapons and explosives far away from our stadium.’
Bomb dogs will also be placed at train and bus stations around the city, while security will be beefed up at nearby airports as well.
Santa Clara Mayor Jamie Matthews added that the city is also receiving a series of ‘cameras and sensors’ from Washington to help monitor public transportation.
Police will also be deployed to hotels hosting players dignitaries and celebrities attending the game.
Despite the heavy security, Special Agent in Charge David Johnson said that ideally people will be barely aware of what is going on around them.
He added: ‘Our collective goal is to provide as safe an environment as we possibly can and also make that security as minimally intrusive as we can. We want people to enjoy the events.’
Peyton Manning will be looking for his second Super Bowl trophy in five appearances during football’s top event when he steps on to the turf at Levi’s Stadium next Sunday.
Manning saw the Denver Broncos defeat long-time rival Tom Brady and the New England Patriots 20-18 on Saturday to reach the final game.
Meanwhile the Carolina Panthers will be looking to cap off a near-perfect campaign which saw them go 15-1 in regular season games.
They demolished the Arizona Cardinals on Saturday, putting in an AFC Championship high score of 49-15 to earn their place in the final.