OHP adds additional bomb truck to fleet

The Oklahoma Highway Patrol has added another bomb truck to its fleet. Captain Kerry Pettingill designed the trucks and implemented the procurement with funding provided by the Oklahoma District Attorney's Council. The trucks are utilized in statewide explosives containment.

"We have worked diligently over the past several years to put together a first-rate bomb squad for the state of Oklahoma," said Pettingill. "Inclusive in that objective was state-of-the-art equipment and professional training for our troopers."

The OHP in Oklahoma City received their first bomb truck in the Spring that has allowed them to respond to calls all over the state with high-tech equipment. With the delivery of the second truck stationed in the Tulsa area, troopers more readily respond to calls in the eastern portion of the state. The two trucks will allow a simultaneous response and contain over $1 million in equipment.

"Now we are able to minimize response time by showing up at hazardous sites with literally all of the equipment we could possibly need to render safe the situation," said Pettingill. "We are proud of these new vehicles and the equipment."

The OHP bomb squad presently has eight full-time members who provide training to federal, state and local law enforcement, fire fighters, emergency medical personnel and public schools. The training includes bomb threats, explosives recognition, hazardous materials awareness and weapons of mass destruction awareness. In addition, troopers provide assistance in the investigation of criminal acts involving explosives to federal, state and local authorities.

"Our bomb technicians have also provided training to over 9,000 first responders throughout the state," said Pettingill. "Four new troopers have been assigned to our squad and will attend the FBI's Hazardous Devices School in Huntsville, Alabama," said Pettingill. "With a crew of 12 members, two explosives detection canines, two robots and the two new trucks we will more effectively serve the citizens of the state of Oklahoma."

Member of the OHP bomb squad and Department of Public Safety officials will meet with media at 10 a.m. on Tuesday, January 7 at DPS headquarters, 3600 N. Martin Luther King to display the new trucks and equipment. Tulsa media are invited to view the trucks and interview personnel at Troop B headquarters, 9191 East Skelly Drive at 2 p.m.