KISNICA/KISHNICA, Kosovo - Members of the Swedish Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) Team for Multinational Battle Group Central, Camp Victoria, Kosovo, and the 745th Ordnance Disposal Company for Multinational Battle Group East out of Michigan performed joint training at the EOD range in MNBG C, Aug. 4.
Exercises like this help demonstrate the different tools and methods used by EOD teams from different countries, said a Soldier from the 745th.
The two teams compared training and procedures then conducted a joint training exercise during which the Swedish team showed their counterparts the function and proper use of their unique equipment.
The Swedish use what's called a "Bomb Bucket." Until arriving in Kosovo, members of the 745th said they had not seen this tool used by their Swedish counterparts. The "Bomb Bucket" is comprised of two solid steel cylinders of different sizes. The larger cylinder is placed over the smaller one, and the two are then secured together with a piece of wood.
After the two parts are pieced together, sand bags are stacked on top of the "Bomb Bucket" about a half a meter high, at which time a net is placed over the entire assembly. This procedure helps contain the blast radius of an explosion.
Another difference between the Swedish and American EOD teams is the type of explosive used. The Swedish team uses a plastic explosive that is much more pliable than the C4 used by Americans.
During the exercise, a Swedish soldier took plastic explosive from a cylinder and rolled it into a ball like it was modeling clay.
The plum-sized explosive was then used to simulate an explosion similar in size to that made by a hand grenade.
When the Swedish EOD team detonated the small explosive the blast shook the ground and sandbags went flying; some as far as 80 meters.
During the next exercise, the Swedes used a net which they secured over the sandbags and bucket. This time the sandbags were shredded as they were pushed upwards against the netting and sand was dispersed across the area.
The EOD teams set off a total of six explosions during the training exercise. After the "Bomb Bucket" demonstrations, the soldiers attached plastic explosives to two anti-tank grenades, as well as smaller grenades. Even from more than 600 meters, each explosion shook the ground and sent a booming sound that echoed across the valley.
"Working with the American EOD team is very good. We learn a lot from them and we hope that we can teach them something as well," said a Swedish EOD tech.
Two teams from two different nations share a common bond and work together to remove explosives from Kosovo.
"We have a very strong relationship with the Swedish EOD team and we hope that continues," said a member of the 745th.