WEB UPDATE: Metro riders could be subject to random bag searches

Posted Tuesday, July 26, 8:16 p.m. Metro officials are looking into the feasibility of random bag searches in response to attacks this month on London’s subway system, Polly Hannon, chief of Metro Police, said Tuesday morning on Capitol Hill.

Testifying before the House Subcommittee on Emergency Preparedness, Hanson said Metro officials are “very interested in seeing how it (bag searches) is done in New York and its application to (Washington’s system).” Last Thursday, police in New York City began inspecting bags and packages commuters brought into the subway system.

Hanson was joined at the hearing by William Morange, director of security for the New York Metropolitan Transportation Authority, and Paul Lennon, director of intelligence and emergency preparedness management for the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Area Transit Authority.

“The public seems happy with it. They seem comfortable,” Morange said of the searches.

Lennon added that transit officials in Los Angeles are considering sending a team to New York to see how police conduct random bag checks.

The Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority operates the country’s second-largest subway system and oversees 1.2 million trips on its rail and bus systems every day.

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