The Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) which guards Coimbatore International Airport has got its first ever dog squad dedicated for explosives detection. Coimbatore airport also became the first airport managed by the Airport Authority of India to have inducted six dogs at a time to its security wing, said sources. The dog squad comprising six trained dogs, six trainers and six assistant trainers was inducted into the CISF unit for the airport.
Two dogs from the new squad will be ‘on duty’ at the airport round the clock along with handlers. The dogs, five Labrador and one Cocker Spaniel, were inducted into the squad after undergoing seven-month training at CISF’s Central Training School in Ranchi. The sniffers were exclusively trained to detect explosives. The dogs were purchased and sent for the training when they were less than one month old. While the six Labrador dogs will be used for detecting explosives on the airport buildings and premises, the Cocker spaniel which is small in size will be used for detecting explosives inside aircraft, especially under the seats.
According to airport director R. Mahalingam, induction of the dog squad will step up the security level of the airport. “We were earlier depending the dog squad of the Coimbatore City Police for explosives detection. With the induction of its own dog squad for the CISF, the airport security level has increased,” he said.
The independent dog squad will help the CISF to have immediate check on suspected materials found at the airport without waiting for the police dog squad stationed on the premises of the City Police Commissioner’s office, more than 10 km away from the airport.
The dogs will be deployed for duty in shifts. An air-conditioned kennel has been constructed for the dogs on the airport premises. Apart from timely food and training, the canines will have weekly veterinary check up. To have regular training for the dogs for detecting explosives, the CISF unit headed by Deputy Commandant Manmohan Singh Yadav has also sought Coimbatore City Police to share samples of a variety of explosives the police dog squad use for training its dogs.