I-Team: Bomb-sniffing dogs may not be getting the job done

January 31, 2013 4:31:41 PM PST
A new government investigation suggests that the Transportation Security Administration may be wasting millions of taxpayer dollars on bomb dogs that can't detect bombs.

In the past two years, the TSA's "threat detection dogs" have become highly compensated government employees.

The cost of keeping bomb sniffing pooches on the government's payroll has almost doubled in the past two years, from $52 million to more than $100 million.

According to a new federal investigation, the worst part of the TSA's canine corps is that some of the dogs aren't doing the job.

For nearly one year, TSA bomb sniffing dog teams were secretly followed and videotaped by inspectors from the General Accounting Office.

According to the report released Thursday, the TSA's national canine program, charged with making sure bombs don't get on planes, is in need of fixing.

The investigation's most startling finding was that TSA officials are allegedly deploying dog teams to high risk airports but the dogs are being used for training or air cargo not for passenger screening as intended.

Investigators released videos that they say show TSA dogs failing explosives tests in passenger terminals.

One factor behind it, according to the report, airport dog teams were not in compliance with TSA training requirements to insure proficiency in bomb detection.

Each TSA dog team costs the taxpayers $164,000 dollars a year.

The government report suggests Americans aren't getting their money's worth if expensive bomb-sniffing dogs can't detect bombs.

Homeland Security officials said Thursday evening that they agree with the findings and TSA needs better oversight on the program and how it spends your money.