$1.2 billion detection devices questioned
Mar 05,2008 00:00 by UPI

WASHINGTON - Tests on radiation detection devices intended for use at U.S. borders and ports failed to prove they can do the job, an independent review indicates.

The independent testing was ordered by U.S. Department of Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff after questions arose about the effectiveness of the $1.2 billion project, The Washington Post reported Wednesday.

The review panel says in its report that "even after collecting all available test results, it was difficult to form conclusions about the operational effectiveness" of the machines known as advanced spectroscopic portal radiation monitors.

Chertoff has made the development and purchase of detection devices a "vital priority" for his department.

A hearing on the new report along with other tests conducted by Homeland Security's Domestic Nuclear Detection Office was scheduled before the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Homeland Security.

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