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Airfreight sniffer dogs have their day again

[ May 8, 2018   //   ]

Explosive detection dogs have been reintroduce at UK airports to screen cargo, according to the Department for Transport.

The dogs have undertaken a rigorous new training programme set out by the UK government to prepare them for the task of sniffing out explosives.

Free running explosive detection dogs (FREDDs) and their human handlers are being used to check freight for a range of explosive materials alongside existing screening methods, such as X-rays.

DfT said each dog had undergone 12 months of rigorous training to achieve government certification before being deployed in the cargo sheds and will go through a regular quality assurance programme.

Aviation Minister, Baroness Sugg, said: “Free running explosive detection dogs are the latest addition to the government’s multi-layered approach to tackling potential aviation security threats. The ability of these highly-skilled dogs to detect small amounts of vapour from explosives hidden in cargo will bolster our existing rigorous security methods, and I was really impressed to see them in action.”

An earlier decision by the DfT to ‘sack’ the country’s cargo sniffer dogs was widely criticised by the airfreight industry, saying that it had led to many airfreight carriers switching flights from UK to Continental hubs.

 

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