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The Kentucky State Police (KSP) Hazardous Devices Unit (HDU) consists of four Hazardous Devices Technicians certified by the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI). Additionally, KSP technicians have received training in aspects of hazardous materials response in accordance with the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) regulations, as well as the Federal Emergency Management Administration (FEMA) National Incident Management System (NIMS) certification.

The Kentucky State Police has jurisdiction throughout the Commonwealth of Kentucky. Personnel and equipment may be utilized in responses outside the borders of the Commonwealth on a case-by-case basis.


Suspicious, hazardous, unknown devices
Explosive devices
Explosive recovery
Radiological/nuclear detection
Chemical/biological weapons
Explosive disposal (to include fireworks)
Protective details
Large events
Special Events

Response Stats

The KSP HDU maintains a high-tempo response capability. In the past two years, the HDU responded to 172 incidents that resulted in the recovery of 5,180 pounds of deteriorated and extremely hazardous dynamite; 7,881 blasting caps; 558 pounds of other explosive material; 3,000 pounds of illegal fireworks; and 79 pieces of military ordinance, including hand grenades and artillery shells.

The four certified technicians of the HDU also responded to and rendered safe 24 Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs). These devices included potentially deadly pipe bombs, package bombs, and chemical reactive devices. This has placed Kentucky in the unenviable position of being in the top two states in the nation for recovery and theft of explosives and explosive material.

Radiation/Nuclear Response

Emerging threat doctrine has mandated that Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear and Explosive (CBRNE) equipment and response became a primary focus in FY 2009 and following years. In 2008 the hazardous devices technicians made a concerted effort in the area of radiation and nuclear material-related response. Each technician received advanced training provided by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Domestic Nuclear Detection Office (DNDO). After receiving the training, the HDU was provided with vehicle-based and human portable radiation detection and identification equipment.

Joining Forces

Interoperability training with other units of the Kentucky Explosives Incident Response Task Force (KEIRTF) has been recognized at the highest levels of the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATFE) and the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI).

Recognizing the emergence of vehicle-borne improvised explosive devices (VBIEDs) and personal-borne improvised explosive devices (PBIEDs), as well as Radiation Dispersal Devices (RDDs), task force members have trained with and tested new ways to defeat these threats. Partnering units of the KEIRTF not only have trained together, but have also responded to and rendered safe numerous improvised explosive devices (IEDs) as a task force.

Contact Information for the Kentucky State Police

Kentucky State Police
919 Versailles Road | Frankfort, KY 40601

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