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Bomb Squad NYC Facts

Members of the Bomb Squad's Team B, from left: Det. Pat LaScala, Det. Johnny Coyle, Det. Mike Garcia, Sgt. John Ryan and Det. Ray Clair.

Members of the Bomb Squad's Team B, from left: Det. Pat LaScala, Det. Johnny Coyle, Det. Mike Garcia, Sgt. John Ryan and Det. Ray Clair. (View larger version)

Photograph by Anders Birch/ National Geographic Channels

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  • When a bomb strikes a blast-resistant suit, the force is diminished by the suit's tightly woven fibers. These fibers spread the blast's force throughout the suit.

  • Ballistic plates help deflect force and repel the shrapnel and secondary fragmentation.

  • Bomb suits are made of Kevlar or some other aramid-based product. Aramid (the generic name for Kevlar) consists of synthetic fibers woven from polymers--large molecules made from strands of smaller molecules called monomers.

  • Aramid's outstanding strength-to-weight ratio makes it an ideal fabric for bulletproof and blast-resistant clothing.

  • Generally arranged to protect the throat, chest and groin areas, blast plates can also be placed inside internal pockets on the front of the arms, legs and ribcage.

  • On July 4, 1940, two Bomb Squad detectives were killed trying to defuse a bomb planted in the British Pavilion at the New York World's Fair.

  • When the unit, created in 1903 and led by Lt. Giuseppe Petrosino, was called the Italian Squad, the bombs were sticks of dynamite, instruments of extortion used by the Black Hand to intimidate Italian merchants and residents.

  • During World War I, the squad went undercover to nab German agents plotting to blow up US munitions ships headed to war.
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