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Bomb Squad - History and Responsibilities

CMPD's bomb squad was established in 1971 and consisted of only two officers. The first major piece of equipment was an open vent containment vessel that was purchased with Federal funds. The bomb squad still has and uses that same containment vessel. 

The unit has grown in size and sophistication to meet and exceed the growing threats from domestic and international terrorists, and the threatened use of weapons of mass destruction (WMD). 

When the unit first formed, the equipment available to bomb technicians consisted of a briefcase full of hand tools, some rope and a homemade "water-cannon" made from galvanized pipe and wood.

Today, the bomb squad has two fully equipped response vehicles and the most sophisticated bomb detection, disruption and protective equipment available.  A remote-controlled robot, remote controlled x-ray machines, various bomb suits and chemical/biological suits, and a myriad of various other tools and equipment are in the bomb squad's arsenal of tools. The bomb squad regularly trains and is able to operate in almost and environment.

All of the department's hazardous devices technicians are certified by the Federal Bureau of Investigation's Hazardous Devices School.  The CMPD also has two explosive detection dogs.  The bomb squad has the ability to call on an additional hazardous devices technician and two explosive detection dogs that work for the Mecklenburg County Sheriff's Department. 

Duties of the bomb squad include: 

  • The render safe and disposal of explosive devices, suspicious packages, Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD), and other hazardous items; 
  • Providing VIP protection for visiting dignitaries; 
  • Providing technical, operational and training support for various local, State and Federal agencies; conducts seminars for members of the CMPD and community members (business and individuals) about bomb threat response and safety. The goal of these seminars is to enhance individual awareness of potential explosive effects, proper reporting methods, search procedures, and to develop a proactive response to various types of threats.