Federal Dollars Sent to Protect Ferry Passengers in Conn.

BRIDGEPORT, Conn. -- The federal Department of Homeland Security is sending a $1.4 million grant to Bridgeport to protect against terrorist bombs on ferries.

The Bridgeport Authority will receive federal funds to guard ferry passengers against improvised explosive devices.

Joseph Riccio, executive director of the Bridgeport Port Authority, said the funds would be used to deal "with the whole issue of improvised explosive devices."

The grant will be used to purchase chemical, biological and explosive screening stations for ferry passengers, undercarriage inspection and screening equipment for vehicles, and equipment that can detect underwater threats and explosive devices.

Bridgeport operates three ferries that transported nearly 900,000 passengers and 500,000 vehicles last year making it one of the busiest ferry systems in the nation.

(c) 2005 Associated Press

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