Truckers and Highway Workers Enlisted in Terror Hunt

JUNE 1, 2004 - Posted at 7:12 a.m. CDT

LITTLE ROCK, AR - A federal Homeland Security Department program is enlisting truckers and others who are familiar with the nation's highways to keep an eye out for possible terror activity.

The effort has already had one high-profile success, the arrest of Washington-area sniper suspects with help from a Highway Watch trucker.

A spokesman for the American Trucking Association says there are many applications for the program, which began two months ago in an agreement with the Transportation Security Administration.

Federal grant money is being spent to recruit and train truckers who volunteer for the Highway Watch program.

About 400,000 truckers, mass transit and highway workers are to be trained by March of 2005.  The program is already running in 29 states, including Arkansas.

So far, about 500 Arkansas drivers have been trained.  The state target is 4,000.

(Copyright 2004 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)