Spectators may finally get a shot at recording their favorite pro golfers at the 2015 U.S. Open at Chambers Bay in Washington. The United States Golf Association announced cell phones will be allowed at the upcoming major for the first time.
Onlookers will be allowed to bring mobile devices which are smaller than seven inches in length or height, as long as the devices are set to silent or vibrate at all times. Cell phones, smartphones and PDAs are included in the policy, but tablets will not be allowed. The need for silence is crucial to a golfer’s ability to concentrate, and one text message notification could cost someone a championship. That is why the USGA will be strictly enforcing the rules during the tournament.
The association has set up four designated “phone zones” that spectators may visit during the event. These areas provide on-site Wi-Fi and the ability to use the phone without disrupting the players.
“It’s a policy we’ve been looking at for some time at the USGA,” Janeen Driscoll, USGA Director of Public Relations, told Golf.com. “The use of mobile phones had been a concern to us from a security perspective, but we’ve seen we’re able to control that and that in this day and age, people are accustomed to having [mobile phones on] them for their own personal security.”
The USGA has published a Spectator Guide for the U.S. Open so visitors will understand the new mobile device policy and other important information about this year’s major at Chambers Bay.