FBI Bomb Tech Training

FBI bomb and explosives experts held a training exercise in Nevada to show the effects of various improvised explosive devices, or IEDs.

Video Transcript

(Bomb technician counts down; three...two...one...)

[Sounds of explosions in the distance]

More than 200 FBI bomb technicians and weapons of mass destruction coordinators converged on Nellis Air Force Base in Nevada this spring for a crash course on improvised explosive devices.

The four-day training in March was part a national initiative by the FBI and the Department of Homeland Security to train bomb squads and emergency responders on emerging explosive threats.

A demonstration—opened to the media—showed the various materials that are used to make improvised explosive devices, or IEDs, and their effects when they detonate.

Bomb Technician (demonstrating dynamite)
...You'll notice the end of it is what is called a rosette crimp.

As cameras trained on the distant desert scrub, agents blew up small objects using plastic explosives, dynamite and a novel type of explosive material called Detasheet, which looks like rubbery linoleum but packs a wallop.

Bomb Technician (demonstrating Detasheet plastic explosive, and C4)
...This is military Detasheet, this is much less quantity of explosive than you've been hearing so far, but this is really hot stuff!

This is the way military C4 comes, if you've never seen it before now you have, and I'll pass this around...

The demonstration progressed to larger explosions using an ammonium nitrate, fuel-oil mixture—the same materials used to blow up the Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City.

As media watched from a distance, agents detonated 50 pounds of ammonium nitrate mixture to destroy a car.

[Sounds of explosions in the distance]

Another car was blown up with 100 pounds of ammonium nitrate.

Then agents detonated a van with 250 pounds of the explosives. The blast sent a plume into the air and left behind a massive crater and wide field of burning debris.

The FBI’s Assistant Director of the Weapons of Mass Destruction Directorate, Vahid Majidi, has called the training initiative a force-multiplier in the FBI’s efforts to train bomb squads.

The hope is that more emergency responders—and sellers of materials that can go into making bombs—will better understand how terrorists might use IEDs in an attack.

Bomb Technician
...so we were essentially able using home-made parts to manufacture the kind of improvised shape charge for use in an anti-personnel situation the way we'd see used against our troops.


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