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EODMU 5 Det. Marianas conducts WWII ordnance disposal in CNMI

Updated: Dec 20, 2022



By Pacific Island Times News Staff


Sailors from Explosive Ordnance Disposal Mobile Unit (EODMU) Five Detachment Marianas disposed of approximately 50 lbs. of World War II unexploded ordnance (UXO) in Tinian Nov. 3.


The ordnance consisted of both U.S. and Japanese projectiles, grenades and

small arms ammunition that were discovered throughout the island of Tinian

over the past year.


Members of the Northern Mariana Islands Department of Fire and Emergency Medical Services, CNMI Department of Public Safety, and CNMI Homeland Security & Emergency Management partnered with the Navy to inform the public of the operation and to restrict public access to the disposal site.


Over a three-day period, the sailors from EODMU Five Detachment Marianas

surveyed safe disposal locations and prepared the ordnance for final

transportation. This included planning to conduct a render-safe procedure

(RSP) on a U.S. Navy 5-inch projectile. The team verified that this round

was armed and could detonate if proper procedures were not followed.


All UXO requires precise handling precautions before the items can be safely

disposed of to ensure the safety of responders.


During the RSP, the team disarmed the round's fuze with a specialized tool

used to shear off its firing pin, preventing unintended detonation. As a

precaution, responders created a bunker of soil and clay-filled bags that

covered the round.


This method, called tamping, was also used for the final disposal to prevent fragments, soil, or other displaced minerals from traveling far distances outside of the safe zone established by CNMI authorities.


EODMU 5 Detachment Marianas Officer-in-Charge Lt. Jason Moyer said

residents should immediately vacate the area and contact emergency

responders if they discover ordnance.


"All unexploded ordnance inherently contains grave risk to anyone who comes

in contact with it," he said. "If not handled properly there is always a chance for unintended detonation to occur that could prove fatal. We always encourage the public to call local authorities if they suspect that something they've come across could be UXO. Unfortunately, the threat of UXO discovery is a reality, but EODMU Five remains committed to preventing disaster and aiding the people of CNMI."

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The mission of EODMU Five Detachment Marianas is to render safe all types of

ordnance, conventional and unconventional, improvised, chemical, biological,

and nuclear to include Improvised Explosive Devices and Weapons of Mass

Destruction. EODMU Five performs land and underwater location,

identification, render-safe, recovery, and disposal of foreign and domestic

ordnance.


EODMU Five is assigned to Commander, Task Force 75, which executes command and control of assigned Navy Expeditionary Combat Forces in the 7th Fleet area of operations. They plan and execute Naval Construction, Expeditionary Logistics, Explosive Ordnance Disposal, Maritime Expeditionary Security, and Exploitation Forces assigned to Commander, 7th Fleet for crisis response, humanitarian assistance, and major combat operations. (JRM)



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