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EOD Defeats IED’s with Robot’s Reach

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EOD Soldiers train to deal with bombs

Story by: Sergeant 1st Class Steve Petibone - Guard Times Staff
  Dated: Tue, Jun 19, 2007

EOD Defeats IED’s with Robot’s Reach
Navy Petty Officer 2nd Class Joseph Ching, Space and Naval Warfare 220, from San Diego, Calif. prepares the Talon Mark 4 Explosive Ordnance Disposal robot for a demonstration. The robot is used to investigate and destroy improvised explosive devises in Iraq and Afghanistan. Ching is part of an active-duty ordance training team visiting Camp Smith to provide training for New York’s 501st EOD Battalion and the 1108th EOD company, both headquartered in Schenectady. Photo by: SFC Steven Petibone, 42nd Combat Aviation Brigade PA-NCOIC

CAMP SMITH TRAINING FACILITY, CORDLANDT MANOR -- Forty-five New York Army National Guardsmen from the 501st Explosive Ordnance Disposal Battalion and the 1108th EOD Company from the Schenectady armory spent their two-week annual training here learning to respond to and reduce the threat of Improvised Explosive Devices or other forms of explosives.

“We are getting briefed about the latest IED information from various countries and the newest situations that Soldiers should be aware of before they deploy.” said Command Sgt. Maj. Ken Church, 501st EOD Battalion. “However, during our first week of training, our basic combat training ranged from land navigation to entering and clearing a room.”

Soldiers operating in combat theaters like Afghanistan and Iraq routinely encounter improvised explosive devices, commonly known as IED’s.

Soldiers operating in combat theaters like Afghanistan and Iraq routinely encounter improvised explosive devices, commonly known as IED’s.

According to Major Robert Mitchell, the acting battalion commander, the 501st EOD training is exceeding his expectations because of the quality of training being provided by the 111th EOD Group from the Alabama Army National Guard.

“The 111th is our training readiness oversight headquarters. They have brought a tremendous amount of resources and expertise to our annual training.” said Mitchell. “They are giving us world class OC’s (observer-controllers) that have deployment experience that enables them to give our teams immediate feed back as they prosecute IED problems.”

The 111th EOD Grp. is the only National Guard EOD Group in the nation.

“The New York Army National Guardsmen were extremely successful in their EOD training,” said Capt. William Dickinson, battalion operations officer, 441st EOD Bn., 111th EOD Grp. “They started out in the crawl mode and quickly moved to the run mode. We were able to identify weaknesses for them to work on before the next annual training cycle.”

The 111th came to conduct annual training at Camp Smith for the first time because the 501st is a newly formed New York National Guard unit.

In addition to the 45 New York Army National Guardsmen at Camp Smith, there were approximately 115 Guardsmen from Massachusetts, West Virginia, Florida and Georgia participating in the EOD training.

© NYS DMNA News Story: EOD Defeats IED’s with Robot’s Reach
URL: http://dmna.ny.gov/news/?id=1208195397
Page Last Modified: Fri, Jan 16, 2009