AS thousands of race fans descended on Mount Panorama for the Bathurst 1000, the NSW Police Force had their best noses on the job.
More than 300 police officers were out in force around the iconic circuit, with an additional 70 officers on the roads surrounding Bathurst.
Highly-trained specialist officers from: the public order and riot squad, operations support group, dog unit, PolAir, licensing police, bicycle unit, youth command and police transport command were also called in.
NSW Police Force (NSWPF) Dog Unit Commander Superintendent Dean Smith said there are a number of roles they perform at an event like the Bathurst 1000.
“The NSWPF Dog Unit supports frontline police through the provision of general purpose, explosive and drug detection dogs to ensure the event runs safely,” he said.
As race fans drive into Mount Panorama, the dog unit’s canines have the ability to sniff our a range of items.
“Detection capabilities include all illicit drugs, explosives including firearms, blood and cadaver,” Supt Smith said.
Supt Smith said the police dog teams support and enhance the policing response to all major events across the state.
“The NSWPF Dog Unit has the ability to locate items that have been secreted in hard to find locations and can cover a lot of ground, as well as screen areas and people that would normally take significant numbers of police to search,” he said.
The NSW Police Force Dog Unit has the ability to locate items that have been secreted in hard to find locations and can cover a lot of ground, as well as screen areas and people that would normally take significant numbers of police to search.NSW Police Force Dog Unit Commander Superintendent Dean Smith
“The unit also supports police in public order, violent or high risk incidents.”
Foundation training commences for dogs when they are around 12-weeks-old, with formal courses beginning when they are 18 months old.
“It generally takes between four to six months for NSWPF Dog Unit handlers and dogs to complete their training courses,” Supt Smith said.
The NSWPF Dog Unit operates 24/7 across NSW and services more than 500 jobs every month.
Dogs respond to incidents including: searches for missing persons and offenders, criminal apprehension, property searches, public order and the arrest of violent offenders at high risk policing incidents.
Detection teams are involved in: search warrants, drug related operations, clearing locations and supporting the policing response at major and mass gathering events, and assistance at crime scene.
The Dog Unit has been involved with the Bathurst 1000 for 10 years.