The Technical Services Unit, also known as the Rhode Island State Bomb Squad, is part of the Law Enforcement Bureau of the Division of State Fire Marshal. Unit members are responsible for responding to, mitigating, and investigating all incidents involving explosive materials throughout the state. The Unit also provides tactical assistance to Federal, State, and local law enforcement units, and conducts dignitary protection operations, clandestine drug lab warrants, explosives destruction, and criminal investigations.
As the only Bomb Squad in Rhode Island, each member is certified by the Federal Bureau of Investigations as a Bomb Technician and undergo both basic bomb school and recurring certification programs at the US Army’s Redstone Arsenal in Huntsville, Alabama. They also attend advanced training programs sponsored by agencies such as the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. Each member participates in more than three hundred hours of training per year and some hold certifications in specialties such as underwater explosives operations, tactical explosive breaching, and as K-9 handlers. Finally, the Unit is responsible for maintaining and operating a significant cache of federally funded advanced equipment, such as x-ray devices, robotic platforms, and vehicles.