Border Agency Deploys 179 Radiation Monitors at U.S. Entry Points

U.S. Customs and Border Protection announced yesterday that in fiscal 2009 it fielded 179 radiation detection devices to entry points across the country (see GSN, Nov. 16).

That brings the total number of deployed radiation monitors at seaports and land-based entry locations to 1,354. The monitors give inspection agents the ability to check nearly all incoming mail, truck freight, ship cargo and personal vehicles for material that could be used in a nuclear or radiological weapon.

The Homeland Security Department agency in the last fiscal year also dealt with 7,408 requests for "technical assistance" regarding possible WMD materials, according to a CBP press release.

"Many inappropriate radioactive shipments were returned to their country of origin," the agency said.

The agency in June opened the Southwest Regional Science Center in Houston. The laboratory can screen, detect and identify chemical, biological and nuclear materials.

Fiscal 2009 ended on Sept. 30 (U.S. Customs and Border Protection release, Nov. 24).

November 25, 2009
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U.S. Customs and Border Protection announced yesterday that in fiscal 2009 it fielded 179 radiation detection devices to entry points across the country (see GSN, Nov. 16).