EOD is the acronym for Explosive Ordnance Disposal. The first lesson in EOD is knowing how to properly spell Ordnance. Many times you'll see Ordnance spelled with an "i" between the "d" and the "n" which is the correct spelling for a type of law or rule. There is no "I" in Bomb...or Ordnance.
All 4 branches of the military as well as many US federal agencies have EOD Technicians. There are also EOD Techs throughout Law Enforcement, Fire Departments and EMA's. They attend a different school located in Huntsville, AL. A third part of the community are UXO - Unexploded Ordnance Technicians that specialize in bombing range clearance but do not conduct RSP's - Render Safe Procedures like EOD and Bomb Techs.
Military EOD School
Military EOD Technicians attend NAVSCOLEOD - Naval School Explosive Ordnance Disposal located at Eglin AFB in Ft. Walton Beach, FL. The Navy EOD pipeline starts at NDSTC - Naval Dive Salvage Training Center, Panama City, FL. In order to start the pipeline, you must first complete the PT Test that is given to BUD/S candidates before you even join the Navy. You then attend a Diver-Centric boot camp. Then attend Pre-Class where "Facilitators" will determine if your in shape and motivated enough to start the pipeline.
At Dive School you learn Dive Physics, Dive Medicine, SCUBA, Mixed Gas Diving, Small Boat Operations in a Mine Environment and the basics of Underwater Search Techniques all while meeting the increasing physical demands. If you haven't been able to read between the lines so far, you may not want to attend this program.
Now that you've completed Dive School, you'll rally up with the other 4 branches to attend Phase I EOD where you'll learn Basic Demolition (Yes, you'll be blowing stuff up), Tools and Methods, Explosive Storage, Transportation and Safety, Recon, Fuse Functioning and a little Bio and Chem.
Phase II is where you'll begin to put it all together where you'll conduct RSP's - Render Safe Procedures using a set of Publications called the 60 Series that tells you exactly how to conduct your RSP.
You'll start out in Ground where you'll know 80 hand grenades in your first day, mortars, rockets, projectiles and landmines. Then off to two Divisions covering Air Ordnance. The US has a lot of different types of ordnance related to air combat.
Next in line is IED's - Improvised Explosive Devices where you let your imagination run wild.
You'll finish up in Nukes - Yep, Nuclear Weapons.
Congratulations! You just completed EOD School and are authorized to wear the Crab...unless you're Navy where you'll go through underwater ordnance with an extended practical where you really put everything together that you've learned since day 1 of Dive School. Well you're still not done because you still have Jump School, some other advanced training, Free Fall Jump School and shooting packages.
Law Enforcement EOD School
If you're a Law Enforcement Officer, you will be hand picked by your department to attend EOD School in Huntsville's Redstone Arsenal for 6 weeks of intensive training starting out with Basic Demolition and rolling into IED's which is the primary mission of Bomb Squads throughout the US.
I've had the distinct pleasure of working with Bomb Squad members and as a Navy EOD Tech, I can tell you they really know their craft. On top of being Bomb Techs, many are also serve as undercover Narcotics Officers and serve on SWAT Teams.
Military EOD clearly work IED's but are usually in a combat zone where the entire country is a demolition range. Bomb Techs have the added pressure of working a problem within a populated city within the US and are subject to much more regulations and restrictions.
Bomb Techs must re-certify every 3 years by attending a one week course in Huntsville.
If you're really good, you may be chosen to attend a new FBI course of instruction that will certify you as a Tactical Bomb Tech. This high stress course has you prove you can conduct RSP's under fire while working on a SWAT Team or during a live Active Shooter event.
If you have more questions about EOD, please contact us and we'll be more than happy to help you with your research or new stories.
Please take a look at all of the equipment that EOD Techs use on a day-to-day basis by looking around our catalog.