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Explosive Ordnance Disposal Officer ... (Military - Officer)

What They Do

About This Career

Explosive ordnance disposal officers determine methods and procedures for locating and rendering safe all types of explosive ordnance. They lead teams that neutralize chemical, biological, and nuclear weapons, as well as improvised explosive devices (IED). They may operate in a variety of challenging environments, such as underwater.

This career is part of the Government and Public Administration cluster National Security pathway.

A person in this career:

  • Directs the locating, accessing, identifying, rendering safe, neutralizing, and disposing of explosive ordnance
  • Determines procedures and methods for rendering safe all types of United States and foreign explosive ordnance
  • Directs the neutralization of hazards from conventional, chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear, and high yield explosives (CBRNE), unexploded explosive ordnance (UXO), improvised explosive devices (IEDs), and weapons of mass destruction (WMD) that present a threat to operations, installations, personnel, or materiel
  • Directs recovery or destruction of classified material
  • Advises authorities of hazardous conditions
  • Conducts underwater operations using self-contained underwater breathing apparatus
  • Directs the search, location, marking, and neutralization of underwater ordnance
  • Performs airborne techniques when directed
  • Instructs in explosive ordnance disposal and special weapons disposal operations and equipment maintenance
  • Advises military and civilian agencies on disposition of hazardous materials and searching techniques for improvised explosive devices

Working Conditions and Physical Demands

People who do this job report that:

  • You would often handle loads up to 10 lbs., sometimes up to 20 lbs. You might do a lot of walking or standing, or you might sit but use your arms and legs to control machines, equipment or tools.
  • Conditions are very hot (above 90 F) or very cold (under 32 F)
  • Exposed to hazardous equipment such as saws, machinery, or vehicular traffic more than once a month
  • Work in this occupation requires being inside most of the time
  • Work in this occupation requires being outside most of the time

Working in this career involves (physical activities):

  • Identifying color and seeing differences in color, including shades and brightness
  • Moving the arms, legs and torso together when the whole body is in motion
  • Seeing clearly up close
  • Speaking clearly enough to be able to be understood by others
  • Identifying and understanding the speech of another person

Work Hours and Travel

  • Irregular hours
  • Overnight travel


  • Email Support
  • 1-800-GO-TO-XAP (1-800-468-6927)
    From outside the U.S., please call +1 (424) 750-3900
  • North Dakota Career Resource Network
    ndcrn@nd.gov | (701) 328-9733