BLACKHAWK VILLAGE, South Korea - As a plague spreads through a major city, the only thing standing between millions of people and the antidote is a room full of explosive booby-traps.

Confronting this simulated crisis and other challenging training scenarios, U.S. Army Explosive Ordnance Disposal technicians honed their life-saving skills together with South Korean law enforcement and military units Oct. 6-8 in preparation for the upcoming G-20 Summit to be held in Seoul in November.

"We developed the theme geared toward G-20 at the request of all the members," said Capt. Scott Mignot, commander of the Army's 718th Ordnance Company (EOD) that hosted the exercise at Rodriguez Range's Blackhawk Village, a training site close to the Korean Demilitarized Zone.

The exercise was not a one-time event, according to Mignot.

U.S. Army EOD technicians train with South Korean units at least twice a year at different venues around Korea.

"Between the two exercises, we usually coordinate individually with each separate organization," said Mignot, an Iraq War veteran from State College, Penn. "We continually train with our Korean counterparts."

To keep the teams on their toes, other EOD teams designed their scenarios and planted the devices they had to find and render safe.

The training scenarios ranged from the booby-trapped room to a hostage situation, with the EOD technicians defusing and dismantling everything from complicated high-end explosives to crude home-made contraptions.

Mignot said training with their fellow EOD experts gives his highly-trained technicians the chance to become even better at their high-stakes mission.

"The goal is to share, learn and develop EOD skills in order to maintain and increase the capabilities on the Korean Peninsula," said Mignot.

Page last updated Fri July 22nd, 2011 at 12:16