For two days in November, D.C.-area police forces came to the Capital One Arena to participate in the Homeland Security Department Science and Technology Directorate's Regional Explosives Detection Dog Initiative. Bomb-sniffing dog teams sniffed around the arena while federal officials collected data on the success rates of the canine units.
Started in early 2017, REDDI is "a series of events aimed at advancing the knowledge and capabilities of the nation’s detection canine teams," according to DHS. The program is an effort to combine the resources and training capabilities of state and local governments with the federal government's heft to better serve bomb-sniffing dog police units. Participants include the Prince George's County Police Department, the Fairfax County Police Department and the Arlington, Va. Police Department.
What happens at REDDI events and what does the program do? We talked to Officer Tom Eggers of the Fairfax County Police Explosives Ordinance Unit and Don Roberts, DHS S&T Detection Canine Program Manager to explain how they–and the dogs–approach the REDDI events.