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Dog detectives behind the headlines

This week Steve Walters takes a look at the use of sniffer dogs in crime detection

SNIFFER DOGS are used by police and customs officers all over the world to detect drugs and explosives. Dogs have a far better sense of smell than people because their smell receptors at the top of a dog’s nose are 100 times longer than in humans

Training for a sniffer dog lasts 12 weeks. They are trained in two stages. First, the trainer teaches the dog to recognize a particular drug or explosive. He hides a sample of the drug or explosive inside a rolled-up newspaper or a rag, which is called a training aid. He places it where the dog can see it and tells the dog to bring the aid back. When it does so, he gives the dog a reward – usually a friendly fight with a trainer or a bone.

The dog soon learns to recognize the substance by its smell. The type of training aid is changed regularly but the smell always remains the same. In the second stage, the aid is hidden where the dog cannot see it. Smells such as perfumes, which some smugglers use to hide the smell of the drugs, are also used so that the dog becomes familiar with them.

Sniffer dogs are trained to detect 12 different types of explosives and four different types of drugs



Read the newspaper cutting about Rusty and correct these statements

1. Rusty has just completed his training 2. Most dogs retire at the age of nine.

3. Last week Rusty discovered some explosives 4. Last night the dog trainers gave Rusty a birthday party

Now read the other article and complete the information


Used by: Length of training: Types of training aids used Number of substances dogs can detect

Main use: Number of stages Rewards given:



Find words in the text which have a similar meaning to the following

1 to finish work permanently 3 a part of a process 5 a return for doing something well

2 to give a course of instruction 4 a piece of torn material or cloth 6 to discover something from clues


3. Rewrite the second paragraph of the main text using the passive

They are trained in two stages. First the dog is taught to…

4. In pairs, use the words to talk about how people are punished in your country for different crimes

A- What happens if you are caught driving over a speed limit?

B- You are fined / You are banned from driving for a year


[ to fine / to ban from driving (for…years) to be sent to prison (for…years) ]

What happens in your country if you are caught:

3. driving over the speed limit – drinking and driving - stealing – smuggling drugs

5. Listening

Before you listen What sort of clues do police look after at the scene of a crime?

Listen to a police officer talking about how fingerprints are used to solve a crime. Put the stages in the correct order

A They cover the surfaces with fine powder to find fingerprints

B The police search the scene of the crime in great detail

C They compare them with fingerprints of suspects and known criminals

D They place sticky tape over the fingerprints to lift them

E They collect clues

F They photograph the prints back in the laboratory

6 Writing

Rewrite the sentences from Exercise 5 in the correct order, using the present passive. Link the sentences with time markers

First…and Next…. Then…. After that… Finally…


Unit 41 (Blueprint Intermediate)


Fay Rowan interviews Errol Mason, a young police officer from Bristol

When I contacted Police Constable Errol Mason, he was just finishing a nine-day night shift and was understandably trying to catch up on lost sleep. “It’s hard to sleep during the day but you just have to try,” said Errol, “otherwise you end up exhausted.”

I asked him when we could meet for a chat. “What about coming along to an ice rink on Tuesday evening – say, about eight?” he suggested. Errol told me that he spent most of his free time playing ice hockey. So the following Tuesday evening I sat and watched Errol skating across the ice. Later, over a cup of coffee, I asked him what his job in the police involved. “Many people have only one image of the police. They think we spend our time chasing criminals in fast cars with wailing sirens and flashing lights,” said Errol with a grin. “In fact, that’s only one small part of the job. A lot of police work can be quite boring. You can be on the desk doing routine office work for a whole month at a time. Then the next month you may be driving around on patrol. Then, perhaps, you’re ‘on the beat” for a bit”

Errol told me that one of the most interesting parts of the job was in fact “community policing” I asked him what this involved. “You have your own special area which you have to patrol. It really means being on the beat: walking round keeping your eyes open, making sure you know what’s going on, chatting to people, basically trying to prevent crime”

Thinking of some of the recent ugly scenes at football matches and demonstrations, I asked Errol if he was conscious of the dangers involved and if he was ever frightened. “Sometimes, yes,” he replied. “Anyone would be. It’s just one of the things you learn to accept. Violence is always frightening and a lot more people nowadays are carrying weapons- knives, cashes and so on. Except in extreme circumstances, all we carry are truncheons, handcuffs and a radio.” When I asked if the irregular hours of police work affected his social life, Errol smiled. “My girlfriend gets a bit annoyed- she says I’m either on night shift or I’m playing ice hockey! But it’s not like being a doctor. When you are off duty, that’s it. It has to be a real emergency like a major riot or something to be called out on your night off.”

If you think police work sounds like the job for you, write fro more information

Glossary: cash- a short solid rubber or metal tube used as a weapon

Truncheon – a short stick carried as a weapon by the police

Handcuffs –a pair of metal rings joined by a short chain for holding together the wrists of a prisoner

Words to learn

Exhausted chase criminal (n) grin (n) patrol (n) demonstration off duty emergency riot

Read and find out

1 when and where the interviewer met Errol 2 what people think the police spend most of their time doing

3 what equipment Errol carries

Date: 2016-05-13; view: 5361; Нарушение авторских прав; Помощь в написании работы --> СЮДА...

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