Bomb detection team shows us how it's done - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

Bomb detection team shows us how it's done

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SAN DIEGO (CBS 8) - ATF bomb experts have to be ready for anything when investigating a possible improvised explosive device. They put their skills to the test here in San Diego.

Junior is ready for action. He's smelling for explosives, and as a black lab he's the perfect breed for what the ATF demands. He's motivated by food, highly intelligent and adaptable.

"We have dogs that work in Afghanistan and Iraq at 120 degrees in the summer and dogs that work in Minnesota at minus 20 in the winter," ATF Special Agent Todd Hoover said.

When he finds something, Junior sits. Barking or touching the device could set it off. And once junior makes a hit, an explosives expert suits up to take a closer look, in this case ex-raying the device to see what it is and determine the best way to safely get rid of it.

"We normally in San Diego will see the standard pipe bombs, mostly PVC. We see a few galvanized steel," Hoover said.

Tuesday's demonstration was designed to show us that latest trends in explosives and offer a warning if you see any of this stuff.

"Don't touch it. Call the bomb squad, even police officers and firefighters. We tell them if you see any of this stuff, don't touch it," ATF Special Agent Rick Verducci said.

Bomb experts here in San Diego average about one call per day, and not all for explosives. Sometimes it's simply grandpa passed away and left a garage full of hand grenades. It's proof they have to be prepared for everything at every moment.

The ATF has also been working closely with authorities in Mexico, training them on explosives. Some powerful firecrackers that are illegal in the U.S. are legal across the border, and could be modified to make extremely dangerous devices.

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