b'SECURITY MIA 61determine what we want to do and if we want to continue; and thenBefore airports deployed other detection dogs, similar studies we will go from there, says Pyatt. But weve learned a lot aboutwere performed to monitor their activity and performance. how we would administer a testing program if we had to do it withResearchers had to demonstrate proof of concept in busy airport passengers. environments and then perform double-blind studies that measured Even during the historic pandemic, 18.7 million passengersaccuracy before dogs became a part of daily airport operations.traveled through MIA in 2020. COVID-19 detection dogs have theCurrently, the pilot project at MIA is testing proof of concept. Its potential to add a new layer of screening within seconds.next phase may provide a roadmap for further implementation. The ultimate goal would be to implement COVID-19 detectionAs this evolves, COVID dogs may be no different from any dogs at all 10 MIA passenger checkpoints. The performanceother working dog in an airport, Pyatt predicts. Now, how long of the two current dogs and handlers at the single checkpointthis will take is anybodys guess.will determine how many dogs and handlers would be needed.I feel very proud that this airport has forged the way and Securing FDA approval for the dogs is another crucial step, andstarted the initial movement of how COVID-19 detection dogs something airport officials expect Florida International Universitycould be deployed in an active airport environment. In some small would handle. way, wherever this ends up in years to come, we can say we were This then could be a viable test used to certify that people arethe starting point; and I think that means a lot.free of COVID, Pyatt remarks. However, we are not there yet. WeWhile MIA is blazing the trail here in North America, airports are still in the beginning stages. overseas are also experimenting with COVID detection dogs. Last He likens the current testing and certification efforts to the stepsyear, Dubai International and Helsinki Airport deployed canines airports took before unleashing dogs to work with TSA, Customsto help screen incoming passengers. In Helsinki, passengers and Border Protection, and cargo personnel.participating in the voluntary program swiped their skin with special This is nothing new to aviation, notes Pyatt. This is just awipes, and then placed the wipes in cups for dogs to sniff. unique twist on the practices weve had in place for years.ENGINEERS & PLANNERSMORE THAN A CONSULTANTA trusted partner, passionate about aviation, dedicated to the industry, and committed to your airport1-888-AVCON-99 | avconinc.comAirportImprovement.comJanuary | February 2022'