BAGRAM AIR FIELD, Afghanistan – Tech Sgt. Daniel K. Robinson, Explosive Ordnance Disposal technician, recently deployed to the 966th Air Expeditionary Squadron at Bagram Air Field, Afghanistan, as a part of Combined Joint Task Force Paladin.
Robinson, a Butte, Mont., native, joined a team of fellow EOD techs in Afghanistan from the 1st Special Operations Civil Engineer Squadron out of Hurlburt Field, Fla.
As an EOD tech, it’s his team’s responsibility to mitigate, render safe, and/or destroy any conventional or unconventional explosive threats as well as chemical, nuclear or biological hazards inside and outside the wire. Their operations can be performed 24-hours a day, seven days a week. Some of these tasks include mitigating improvised explosive devices, provide post blast analysis and perform route clearing packages.
By providing their EOD capabilities, Robinson and his EOD team members make it possible for service members deployed to Bagram to complete their missions with confidence; knowing EOD is only one call away.
“We can’t do our job without EOD, there’s just no way,” said Tech Sgt. Eric Fox, team leader with the 455th Expeditionary Security Forces Squadron Quick Reaction Team or Reapers. “For example; we called them out for a rocket we found, and it’s the same type of ordnance I’ve seen used in IEDs in the past. By them coming out and destroying it, that’s one less IED [the enemy] can use against BAF or us. Not to mention the multiple IEDs they can save our lives from by diffusing it, before the enemy can diffuse them on us.”
There is not a day that goes by where EOD is not called on to respond.
Robinson said this makes him feel like he is contributing to Operation Enduring Freedom.
“We directly support the war fighters by eliminating the dangers posed by IEDs and other explosive devices,” he said. “We gather intelligence from the battle field and develop and train on new techniques and procedures for our forces.”
To be an EOD tech, Robinson went through a rigorous nine-month course where he had to pass more than 50 tests that challenged not only his intelligence and attention to detail, but his physical endurance and mental capacity.
There are countless situations where Robinson has to rely on this extensive training and his ability to think on his feet in order to keep himself, his team and others safe. But he said he has his favorite parts of the job.
“[My favorite part about my mission here] is the satisfaction hat I have when I do my job,” Robinson explained. “Knowing that I protect others, save property and allow other missions to continue unabated.”
Robinson is the leader of highly experienced three-man EOD team. His responsibilities include coordinating all actions on the scene of an explosive emergency, safely clear the hazard and turn over a safe scene when done.
Robinson has been serving in the U.S. Air Force for almost 12 years. He is currently on his third combat deployment but has been on seven deployments overall.