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Fire Inspectors Adding Extra Layer Of Protection In Search For Terrorists

Fire Inspectors In 46 Bergen County Towns Carry Radiation Detectors
The NYPD and other local law enforcement agencies use radiation detectors as a preemptive measure to keep a dirty bomb out of the area. (Photo: CBS 2)

The NYPD and other local law enforcement agencies use radiation detectors as a preemptive measure to keep a dirty bomb out of the area. (Photo: CBS 2)

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PARAMUS, N.J. (CBSNewYork) – In an effort to add an extra layer of protection in the search for terrorists, fire inspectors in 46 Bergen County towns now carry radiation detectors.

They are about the size of a cell phone and Bergen County Police Chief Brian Higgins said they are sensitive, WCBS 880’s Sean Adams reported.

“There are going to be areas or times when we pick up radiation from somebody who has received radiation treatments, maybe a large delivery of potassium rich bananas,” Higgins said.

A federal grant has allowed local fire inspectors to be recruited as part of this new measure of protection. Dozens of inspectors in Bergen County will carry a handheld radiation detector as they make their normal rounds. Several other counties in northern New Jersey are also giving their fire inspectors radiation detectors.

“We have a process in place where one of these detectors goes off, the fire inspector has been trained to read them to see what they are indicating, identify the source, and then start the process in calling the bomb squad,” Higgins said.

According to the police chief, giving the fire inspectors radiation detectors to bring with them on inspections will add the opportunity to detect anything that may be giving off a radiation signature.

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