Alabama hosting law enforcement, dog teams for explosives training

Fifteen dog teams from across Alabama and Mississippi are in Tuscaloosa for a three-day training offered by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.

The University of Alabama is hosting the Department of Homeland Security’s Regional Explosives Detection Dog Initiative. REDDI is a program designed to enhance the abilities of police departments to detect bombs and improvised explosive devices.

Specialized training teaches the canines and their handlers tactics that help them stay one step ahead of those attempting harm in their communities.

The teams were trained in multiple scenarios including finding potential explosive devices inside suspicious vehicles and odor recognition tests.

Trained dogs can find and detect dangerous odors from explosives. That comes in handy for the University of Alabama Police Department, who help secure Bryant-Denny Stadium ahead of home games in the fall.

“Game days are an extremely long day for us with a lot of canine searches,” said UAPD’s Sgt. John Turner. “There are multiple perimeters that are established and everything coming in and out of the perimeters needs to be checked.”

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