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Old trolley cars to be used to train TSA dogs

Sgt. Herrera and Iras inspecting U2 car

Sgt. Herrera and Iras inspecting a trolley car

SAN DIEGO – Two of the original San Diego trolley cars were loaded onto trucks Monday for transport to San Antonio, where they will be used to train explosives-sniffing dogs.

The vehicles, which weigh about 80,000 pounds each, were cut in half, hoisted by crane and strapped to flatbed trucks for the 1,300-mile journey.

Bragg Crane Service lifting U2 Trolley car

Bragg Crane Service lifting U2 Trolley car

According to the Metropolitan Transit System, the cars made in Germany by Siemens entered service in 1981 and carried around 9 million passengers about 2.5 million miles.

“These cars were the workhorses of our system since the inception of our light rail system,” said Paul Jablonski, CEO of MTS. “It is satisfying to see that their life has been extended and will play a role in keeping transit system patrons safe throughout the United States.”

The MTS cars will provide the dogs at a 10-week course at Lackland Air Force Base a real-life environment in which to train. The dogs are with the Transportation Security Administration and Department of Homeland Security National Explosives Detection Canine Team Program.