Recently a friend of mine in New York took a day off from work to undergo a medical procedure that included radiation. On his way home he stopped by a convenience store to pick up some milk. As he was waiting in line, a man stood near him eying him very carefully.
After he made his purchase he walked out of the store and the man followed him out. When he reached the sidewalk, the other man pulled a badge from his pocket and identified himself as a police officer.
The officer asked my friend where he was coming from. My friend, perplexed, but with nothing to hide, told him and showed him the paperwork he received when he left the hospital.
The cop thanked him and apologized for disturbing him but told him that he had set off his portable radiation detector.
My friend thanked the officer for his diligence and called me on the way home, a bit excited by the incident. He had no cops carried radiation detectors. And he was more than a little appreciative that this officer followed through on the alarm his gave out. He said the encounter made him feel a bit safer living in New York
Now the NYPD is going a step further, adding radiation detectors to some patrol cars. The cars - and the officers - will be stationed at bridges and tunnels. The hope is to, not only detect vehicles that may be carrying radiological devices, but being in a position to immediately act on that information and intercept the vehicle for inspection.
Like my friend, efforts like this makes me feel a bit safer about being in New York as well.