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Navy Expeditionary Combat Command (NECC)

Navy Explosive Ordnance Disposal Hosts Arctic Training Exercise Snow Crab Ex

by Lt. Chelsea Cannaday
22 January 2024

Snow Crab Ex 24-1 is a two week exercise designed to test and evaluate U.S. Navy EOD capabilities in a simulated Arctic environment and, ultimately, improve Navy EOD’s combat effectiveness.

“We have a responsibility and a duty to be able to respond globally to explosive threats to peer adversaries and competitors. Navy EOD and Navy Diving forces aggressively pursue opportunities to further develop a more agile and flexible force to support the Fleet commander,” said Capt. Joseph Haywood, commander, Explosive Ordnance Disposal Group (EODGRU) 2. “Snow Crab Ex allows Navy EOD and Navy Diving forces to build capability and readiness in an Arctic environment, so we are better equipped to fight for sea control in the Arctic environment.”

During Snow Crab Ex, Explosive Ordnance Disposal Mobile Unit (EODMU) 12 and Mobile Diving and Salvage Unit (MDSU) 2 will exercise tactical control over Navy EOD technicians from EODMU 12 and EODMU 2, as well as MDSU 2.

“Our EOD technicians and divers have a highly unique skill set, strong mindsets, and an unbreakable bond that allows them to commit to and accomplish seemingly impossible tasks, and that is what we are training toward during Snow Crab Ex 24-1,” said Cmdr. David Scherr, commander, EODMU 12. “It is important that we are able to efficiently operate wherever we are called, and we'll be honing our tactics, techniques, and procedures in a challenging Arctic environment to ensure we are ready for the challenge.”

Units participating in Snow Crab Ex 24-1 include: EODGRU 2, EODMU 2, EODMU 12, MDSU 2, EOD Expeditionary Support Unit (EODESU) 2, Maritime Expeditionary Security Squadron (MSRON) 4, Expeditionary Exploitation Unit One, and Navy Expeditionary Intelligence Command (NEIC).

Navy EOD will clear simulated unexploded ordnance, secure critical infrastructure, and effectively communicate between units who will be distributed and operating simultaneously in a training environment, while also maintaining command and control (C2) during the exercise.

Navy Divers will also complete ice dive training, to include underwater location and identification of ordnance, to ensure they can complete dive and salvage operations in Arctic waters.

The Minnesota National Guard will provide air support for portions of the exercise. Camp Ripley provides ideal conditions and training ranges to simulate an Arctic environment for ice and cold weather dive training, where Navy divers can train in a subzero temperature and arduous conditions at training ranges.

“Camp Ripley provides us an opportunity to train in an environment that mimics the Arctic region, without the exceptional cost of traveling to remote areas,” said Capt. Haywood. “The Minnesota National Guard and Camp Ripley provide us modern facilities and the logistical and administrative support needed. They have been exceptional partners training with us as we train and prepare to be able to respond to any situation in any environment.”

The U.S. Navy routinely patrols on, above, below and around Arctic waters to ensure the security of commerce and demonstrate freedom of navigation. Exercises like Snow Crab Ex 24-1 allow our teams to assess their readiness, increase their experience in the region, test new technologies, and advance our understanding of the Arctic environment.

Navy Expeditionary Combat Command units participating in Snow Crab Ex 24-1 include: EODGRU 2, EODMU 2, EODMU 12, MDSU 2, EOD Expeditionary Support Unit (EODESU) 2, Maritime Expeditionary Security Squadron (MSRON) 4, Navy Expeditionary Logistics Support Group (NAVELSG), and Navy Expeditionary Intelligence Command (NEIC). All units are headquartered at Joint Expeditionary Base Little Creek-Fort Story with the exception of NEIC, headquartered on Naval Air Station Oceana Dam Neck Annex, and NAVELSG, headquartered on Naval Weapons Station Yorktown.

For more news about U.S. Navy EOD and Explosive Ordnance Disposal Group Two, visit and