The first certified third-party canine team began screening air cargo for explosive devices last week, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) said.
The development of standards for the use of third-party canines for air cargo screening fulfills a requirement in the TSA Modernization Act of 2018.
The act became law in October. The following month, third-party canine providers were permitted to become Certified Cargo Screening Facility-Canine (CCSF-K9).
CCSF-K9 provides another method for air carriers to screen cargo to TSA and international standards. Third-party teams can be used to screen TSA-regulated entities operating under a TSA-approved or accepted security program air cargo, aircraft operators, and foreign air carriers.
Teams must pass annual certification.
“This program allows TSA to expand its network of certified explosives detection canines further enhancing aviation security,” TSA Administrator David P. Pekoske said. “The canine program is an integral part of TSA’s layered approach to security. This is a significant achievement for TSA’s explosive detection canine program.”
The first third-party company to become certified was Cargo Screening K9 Alliance.
The alliance completed two days of TSA certification training at the company’s Canine Academy in Anniston, Ala., in November and received notification Dec. 7 that it met all of the program requirements.