First private canine team certified to carry out cargo screening at US airports

Cargo Screening K9 Alliance (CSK9) has become the first commercial company to achieve US Transportation Security Administration (TSA) certification allowing their dogs to screen cargo.
The certification means that the company will now be able to deploy its canine teams to screen air cargo for aircraft operators, foreign air carriers, and other TSA-regulated entities operating under a TSA-approved or accepted security programme.
Until recently, only TSA canine teams have been able to carry out this function.
To be certified, CSK9’s Anniston Canine Academy went through two days of “gruelling certification” carried out by TSA approved evaluator Spectrum Canine Solutions.
The facility is one of four hubs that will initially be used to support CSK9 cargo screening operations across the US.
Another 12 canine teams are already in training and scheduled to undergo certification in the coming weeks
CSK9 president Paul Hammond said: “I am so proud of our training and support staff, who with very short notice, made a herculean effort to ready the search areas, containers, and boxes to meet the testing layout specifications.
“Our experienced handlers and well-trained canines were spot on, as they accurately detected explosive odours hidden within complex cargo configurations.”
Spectrum Canine Solutions president Frank Schembre added: “After placing the teams through a rigorous assessment, CSK9 has set the bar high, rising to the occasion of being the first successful teams ever to pass these standards, taking a giant step in providing a quality layer of security that the cargo industry and our nation needs."
TSA established the programme to provide an efficient and effective method for screening air cargo to TSA standards.
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