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EOD Airmen remove, detonate WWII-era bomb in Pensacola

HURLBURT FIELD, Fla. -- Explosive ordnance disposal Airmen from the 16th Civil Engineer Squadron destroyed a Word War II-era explosive device found in Pensacola Tuesday.

The 100-pound photo-flash bomb, common to the World War II or Korean War period, was found by construction workers clearing storm debris in the waters of the Santa Rosa Sound on Pensacola Beach.

When they found the rubble, they dug it up with a backhoe. But, when they realized they found unexploded ordnance, the workers dropped the bomb onto the sand and notified the state fire marshal, who in turn requested military assistance.

Upon arrival at the scene, the team of three EOD Airmen immediately investigated the device.

“When we got there, it (the bomb) was laying on the ground near the water where the workers had dropped it,” said Staff Sgt. Jason Wilburn, EOD team leader for the response.

Originally, the team planned to detonate the bomb on the beach.
“When we first got there, we didn’t know what we were dealing with,” said Sergeant Wilburn. “Once we knew what it was, we determined it was safe enough to transfer back to Hurlburt Field.”

The team then loaded the bomb onto the response truck.

The Airmen performed an emergency detonation of the device using ten pounds of explosives at approximately 2:45 p.m. Tuesday on the EOD range.

This wasn’t the first time 16th CES EOD has been asked to perform such a task in the local area.

“We’ve been asked to do this before, maybe twice a quarter,” said Sergeant Wilburn.

Even though the response was off base, EOD’s mission remained unchanged.

“It’s our job no matter what the situation,” said Sergeant Wilburn.