NCTAS ID Carousel

This carousel was produced for the Scottish Police Authority wishing to enhance training working towards NCTAS accreditation.

The NCTAS is a comprehensive scheme being rolled out under the Home Office initiative covering canine training, welfare, and accreditation procedures, which are developed in collaboration with the National Police Chiefs Council (NPCC), UK Border Force, National Offender Management Service and the Royal Army Veterinary Corps.

NCTAS is being developed for use with detection Dog organisations in both public and eventually private sectors in the UK.

All detection Dogs accredited by NCTAS will be assured that they are performing at a standard that is nationally recognised by the UK government.

The NCTAS test consists of eight plastic floors mounted stands placed in a line. Each stand contains a stainless steel scent pot and lid spaced 100cm apart. This distance allows for large targets to be used without any interference between adjacent samples.

The search Dog must walk the line with the handler and identify the container which holds the target odour.

Our 16 arm carousel has been designed to have 100cm between scents pots with every other arm removed. This simulates the distance the Dog needs to travel between centres in the NCTAS test and eliminates cross-contamination. This provides a perfect training aid alongside the NCTAS floor stands.

We believe carousels will eventually be used as part of the government NATAS scheme as a stand-alone test and protocols are currently being drawn up by the DSTL

You may ask “Why make a 16 arm carousel and not an 8 arm for this test”. The advantage of having a 16 arm carousel for future training far outweighs the additional cost of producing the additional arms.

Statistically, the dog’s ability can be proven through his ability and not through guesswork!

The probability of the Dog guessing four times correctly in a row with an 8 arm carousel or on floor stands is 1/4096. Expressed mathematically:-

1/8 * 1/8 * 1/8 * 1/8 = (1/8) 4 = 1/4096

With a 16 arm carousel, the probability (1/16) of the Dog guessing four times in a row decreases massively to 1/65536.

It’s easy to see why this type of testing is used by government agencies to accredit Dogs and create confidence and assurance that search Dogs are working and performing at a standard that is recognised.