The Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (Metro) Transit Police Department (MTPD) will receive $9.56 million under the Transit Security Grant Program from the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to fund 20 additional officers.
Metro will use the grant to establish, equip and train five, four-person anti-terrorism teams whose activities focus on terrorism prevention. The teams will focus on deterring potential terrorists from selecting Metro as a target and increase random patrols of Metro facilities and vehicles; decrease response times for calls for service directly related to suspicious packages, people or threats; and provide a constant, uniformed, high-visibility patrol directed toward anti-terror.
The anti-terrorism teams also will increase intelligence gathering, enhance cooperation and information sharing with federal and local law enforcement, and implement new technology to prevent and identify threats related to terrorism.
MTPD also has been awarded $1.8 million in DHS Urban Area Security Initiative (UASI) grants, which will be used for expanding the chemical detection program and upgrading radio communications.
Approximately $1.3 million of UASI funding will expand Metro’s chemical detection program to two more stations, and $500,000 will pay for upgrades to improve radio communications in Metro tunnels in Prince George’s County.
“We’re grateful to the Department of Homeland Security for the grants, which we intend to put to use right away,” said Metro GM John Catoe.