Facts: Bomb Hunters: Afghanistan

Video highlights from Bomb Hunters: Afghanistan

Learn more about Bomb Hunters: Afghanistan

  • The US Army 23rd Engineer Company, also known as the 23rd Sappers was stationed in Jelawur, Afghanistan for a 12 month deployment from February 2010 to 2011.

  • A combat engineer or sapper is a soldier who performs a variety of engineering duties, including laying or clearing minefields, demolitions, general construction, field defenses, and repair.

  • Three platoons plus a headquarters unit comprise the 23rd Engineer Company based in Alaska. There is also an EOD (Explosive Ordnance Disposal) unit attached to them.

  • Jelawur is located along the Arghandab River, northwest of Kandahar City.

  • MRAP vehicles, (Mine Resistant Ambush Protected) are what the 23rd Engineer Company members drive around in when searching for IEDs. They are designed to survive IED and ambush attacks.

  • The two main MRAPS are the Husky and the Buffalo. The Husky works as a mine detector on wheels. Once it finds and marks a possible IED, the Buffalo moves in to interrogate the area and neutralize any IED found.

  • Frequent acronyms that are used by the engineers are: BIP (blow in place), RCP (route clearance patrol), IED (improvised explosive device), EFP (explosively-formed penetrator) and HME’s (homemade explosives).

  • Taliban are reportedly using fertilizer, batteries, wood, saw blades, copper wire, foam packaging and ball bearings to make homemade explosive devices.

  • A well-working, repairable robot will complete more than 1,000 missions during its theater tenure.

  • The Taliban, a Muslim fundamentalist group, took control of Afghanistan's government in 1996 and ruled until the 2001 U.S.-led invasion drove it from power. As such, the Taliban remains the main enemy of the US Military in Afghanistan.

  • In 2010, 268 U.S. troops were killed by improvised explosive devices, which is about the same number of casualties from the past three years combined.

Discuss this article


Never miss a Nat Geo moment

Your email address