SWAT Training Explosion Leaves 16 Hospitalized

(RightWing.org) – Law enforcement officials face danger daily while performing their duties. In an unusual twist of fate, a group of California sheriff’s deputies ended up in the hospital after confronting an unknown danger. Here’s what we know so far about the incident.

On March 13, the Orange County Sheriff’s Department (OCSD) issued a statement on its social media accounts advising that “multiple members” of the agency’s Special Weapons and Tactics (SWAT) team sustained injuries during a training exercise conducted jointly with the department’s Hazardous Devices Section (HDS), a formal name for the law enforcement agency’s bomb squad.

The notice explained that earlier that day, members of the OCSD’s SWAT and HDS teams conducted their annual joint training exercise at a nearby FBI complex in Irvine. An “explosion occurred indoors” at the Special Agent Jerry Crowe Regional Tactical Training Facility, injuring 16 members of the SWAT team. One wounded officer transported himself to a nearby hospital, and the other 15 were sent by ambulance.

The sheriff’s department confirmed that one SWAT member sustained a leg injury requiring surgery. Another suffered a superficial back injury, and another suffered from a leg injury that did not require operations to repair. The remaining 13 team members received treatment for ringing in their ears and dizziness. Fortunately, none of the deputies received life-threatening injuries in the explosion.

The OCSD’s notice concluded by advising that the department was conducting a joint investigation with FBI officials.

The Associated Press spoke with OCSD Sgt. Frank Gonzalez about the incident. He said the cause of the explosion wasn’t immediately clear yet. FBI Public Affairs Specialist Laura Eimiller confirmed that none of the agency’s personnel were injured during the blast.

Two days later, the FBI posted a notice on its X/Twitter account advising that the agency’s Los Angeles field office was working with OCSD to determine the cause of the incident. The notice also expressed the agency’s “best wishes” for the full recovery of the injured sheriff’s deputies.

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