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Using Hand Held Metal Detectors Effectively

Hand held metal detectors offer an inexpensive means of scanning persons for concealed knives and other weapons, foil wrapped drugs and a wide range of other metallic objects.

But there are a few important things that the operator must consider whilst using them.

1. What type of objects are you looking for?

Knives or other weapons? - a general purpose scanner should be sensitive enough, but choose a unit from a reliable manufacturer / supplier.

Looking for smaller items? - a very high sensitivity unit may be required - and care must be taken when setting the sensitivity levels of the metal detector before use.

Note: Budget price units can produce erratic results, are prone to early failure and typically offer poor battery life performance, ...so any initial cost saving could be quickly eroded where the unit is used for more than just the odd occasion.

2. Who will be scanned?

- Everyone?

- Just selected persons?

How will the selection be made as to who to scan without risk of being accused of discrimination? (Note: a Random Search Selector from Insight Security will de-risk and easily resolve the selection problem).

- How will you handle people in wheelchairs?

3. What procedures apply / what course of action will you take when an object is detected?

It’s important to ensure that clearly defined procedures are put in place to define exactly what actions will be carried out when various objects are discovered. Operators need to be fully trained to ensure familiarity with defined procedures.

How to Scan a Person’s body Quickly and Efficiently

It’s vital that operators know how to efficiently and effectively scan people without touching them or causing offence.

Touching the body of the person being scanned could land the operator in trouble. It could cause offence, or in the worst case, could even lead to legal prosecution.

The professional scanning pattern (see diagram below), offers maximum coverage of the body with minimum effort and time (there`s also a link below to a printable version of the guide):


handheld metal detector body scanning

Professional Body Scan Pattern, for the effective use of hand held metal detectors (as recommended by Garrett Metal Detectors).


Note: Garrett Metal Detectors have been recognised as a leader in the metal detector industry since the early 1980`s and their products are in daily use worldwide by police, the military, ports and airports, schools and courthouses as well as private and public sector users.


Print Friendly version of Scanning Guide:

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