RTA has one of the largest police forces in Cuyahoga County, so it is of no surprise that we also have one of the largest K-9 forces. Comprised of eight teams of handler and canine, RTA’s unit is used for more than just patrolling the buses and trains.
The RTA K-9 force started with just four dogs in 2006. Over the past twelve years, we’ve we've had nearly 20 dogs that have been trained in patrol and explosive detection, with our current roster at 8.
Most of the K-9 unit have attended the TSA Explosive Detection training at Lackland Air Force Base in San Antonio, Texas. They have completed the ten-week training course and are certified as explosive detection canines, and are required to complete training exercises throughout the year. TSA provides RTA with approximately $50,500 per year for the seven TSA dogs.
RTA also has a dual purpose K-9, Kubo. Kubo is trained in the areas of explosive odor protection, patrol, tracking and aggression and building and area search. He is not a TSA dog, and is owned by RTA.
Our canines and handlers are used throughout Cuyahoga County and the United States to assist with large-scale special events, bomb threats, and other call-outs as needed. Many of our dogs and handlers have attended Presidential Inaugurations and Super Bowls, as well as local large events such as the Cleveland Marathon, NBA Finals/World Series, and the 2016 Republican National Convention.
They are a part of the RTA family and we like for them to be visible around the system. If you see an officer with his K-9, stop over and say hi.
To meet our current roster of K-9s and handlers, visit www.rideRTA.com/transitpolice/K-9