Armored carriers, bomb-sniffing dogs on standby for Super Bowl security

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by JIM DOUGLAS

Bio | Email | Follow: @wfaajdouglas

WFAA

Posted on January 21, 2011 at 8:56 PM

Updated Friday, Jan 21 at 9:30 PM

ARLINGTON - If you want to stage the biggest game, be ready to fight a small war.  

A parking lot near Cowboys Stadium in Arlington bristled with military-style hardware and gadgets Friday afternoon as more than a dozen agencies showed their readiness to provide Super Bowl XLV security at several sites across North Texas.  

The FBI brought a mine-resistant armored personnel carrier that was developed for the war in Iraq. The bureau will have four of the carriers on standby. 

FBI Special Agent in Charge Robert Casey said hundreds of extra agents are arriving from across the nation.  

"The event could present a vulnerability for terrorist attack," he said. "That's our principal responsibility."  

About 50 additional FBI SWAT team members with Super Bowl experience will join local SWAT officers. Agent Matt Segedy explained some of the unit's tools, including a roving robot camera called a "throwbot" because it's so small it can be tossed through a window. Sniper rifles and scopes were also on display.  

"We've done specific training for the Super Bowl in the stadium with Arlington SWAT," Segedy said. "We've done rappelling; we've prepared for barricaded persons, room clearing."  

Nearby, a black lab named "Charlie" fetched a tennis ball bounced by his ATF handler. Charlie is a veteran that has served in Iraq and Afghanistan, but he'll put his bomb-sniffing skills to work around the stadium and at other venues.

The ATF is bringing in 25 dog teams. Agents say the dogs can detect up to 19,000 explosive compounds.  Agents with the U.S. Immigrations and Customs Enforcement (ICE) will also help provide security and gather intelligence.

Arlington police might even break out their newest surveillance gadgets, including two small remote controlled helicopters. One is designed for outdoor use, but the other is so tiny and light that it could be maneuvered inside the stadium if necessary.  

The hope is that none of the high-tech hardware on display will be needed. Casey described security for the event as "a very hard shell."  

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