NewsWest 9 visited the location where officers set up scenarios, practice with the equipment and overall get mentally prepared.
MIDLAND, Texas — It’s been nearly a week since a pipe bomb was found at the Ector County Courthouse. Bomb squads play a critical role in taking quick action to make the scene safe in situations like these.
NewsWest 9 got to be at a location where officers set up scenarios, practice with the equipment and overall get mentally prepared.
James Howard, officer with the Midland Police Department Bomb Squad, said every piece of information counts.
“Typically, as soon as we arrive on scene, we are going to gather as much information as possible,” said Howard. “We may interview the people at the residence or business where this package was at and ask some questions about that.”
NewsWest 9 also spoke with Kyle Slagle, another officer with MPD bomb squad. He said that training a few times a month keeps them prepared for what could come.
“We train for 24 hours a month, so that’s three days a month,” said Slagle. “Other than being a full-time police officer, we come out here and set up mock scenarios in our little buildings. We build devices for each other like bombs that get seen around the country.”
Officers with the bomb squad believe technology plays a major role in their job.
“We got a new x-ray system called an SRB,” said Howard. “This allows us to shoot multiple x-rays without ever having to go back near that package.”
Howard believes time is considered a friend and an enemy through it all.
“We call it time on target,” said Howard. “We want as little time on target as possible, so we do a lot of training so we are efficient in the work that we do.”
Officers with the bomb squad advise the public to stay alert and report anything that looks suspicious to the local authorities.