PATH subway system pilot security project
| 07.11.2006 | 08:58:05 | Views: 2631 | ID:
July 11 '06: The Department of Homeland Security will begin a pilot security screening program at New Jersey's PATH stations starting Thursday, the New York Times reported. "Starting at 10:00 am Thursday, riders may be electronically searched by handheld devices that look like cameras, told to step in front of machines that resemble phone booths or subjected to tests involving radar, infrared sensors and other technology" according to federal sources. The pilot program will last three weeks and comes on the heels of recent announcements from New York City officials and federal homeland security officials that a terrorist plot to blow up commuter tunnels into the city was uncovered.
A DHS spokesman, Christopher Kelly told the Times, "In the first stage we used existing technology, and now we are moving out. ... It may slow things up by a few minutes for those who are selected, but in general, it won't significantly affect people's commute."Much of the technology being tested uses state-of-the-art advances which allow federal security officials the ability to scan many people "quickly and unobtrusively" - though officials would not give details. What government officials did tell the Times - millimeter-wave technology which can detect energy emitted by most objects - will be used. "Experts say that the sensors read energy wavelengths that pass through clothing or composite materials, and that millimeter-wave devices can be placed at a distance from passengers who are being scanned, while generating images of objects under their clothing," the Times reported. The pilot program is a two-year endeavor funded by $10 million from Congress "to develop scanning equipment that can provide railroad stations with a level of security comparable to what exists at airports."
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