Personnel attached to Explosive Ordnance Disposal Mobile Unit (EODMU) 1 prepare a Mark 18 Mod 2 Kingfish unmanned underwater vehicle (UUV) for launch and recovery in Crescent Harbor near Naval Air Station Whidbey Island, Wash., during a Certification Exercise (CERTEX), July 16. As part of the CERTEX, elements of EODMU-1 and EODMU-5 demonstrated their ability to maintain freedom of navigation and sea control of key waterways by clearing inert mines in Crescent Harbor and the Saratoga Passage. U.S. Navy EOD is the world’s premier combat force for eliminating explosive threats so the Fleet and nation can fight and win wherever, whenever and however it chooses. U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Marc Cuenca/Released

Personnel attached to Explosive Ordnance Disposal Mobile Unit (EODMU) 1 prepare a Mark 18 Mod 2 Kingfish unmanned underwater vehicle (UUV) for launch and recovery in Crescent Harbor near Naval Air Station Whidbey Island, Wash., during a Certification Exercise (CERTEX), July 16. As part of the CERTEX, elements of EODMU-1 and EODMU-5 demonstrated their ability to maintain freedom of navigation and sea control of key waterways by clearing inert mines in Crescent Harbor and the Saratoga Passage. U.S. Navy EOD is the world’s premier combat force for eliminating explosive threats so the Fleet and nation can fight and win wherever, whenever and however it chooses. U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Marc Cuenca/Released

Ordnance training held off Whidbey

U.S. Navy Explosive Ordnance Disposal Mobile Unit One from San Diego and Unit Five from Guam arrived in Naval Air Station Whidbey Island to conduct underwater training for minesweeping.

No live explosives were being used.

Unit One sent an unmanned systems platoon and a command-and-control element while Unit Two sent a mine countermeasures platoon.

A complete expeditionary mine countermeasures company is working through their advanced based certification exercise to prepare for a deployment in the near future, Cmdr. Brian J. Reitter said.

“The training value we get out of this can not be replicated,” Reitter said.

“The tidal shifts, the current, the way the bottom type is, and a lot of the man-made objects in the water from the fishing industry helps us really to stress ourselves in a controlled operational environment.”

Conditions at Whidbey help the unit to prepare for the adversities and challenges they’ll face on deployment, according to Reitter.

“What we do is we replicate perceived adversaries’ tactics if they were trying to prevent maritime access to the harbor or in approaches to the harbor,” he said.

According to a Navy press release, Explosive Ordnance Disposal forces began mine countermeasures operations on July 13 in Crescent Harbor, a key Whidbey Island port, and the Saratoga Passage maritime transit ways in order to reduce the enemy mine threat to support freedom of navigation and sea control.

The training in Crescent Harbor was expected to conclude July 24.

Lt. Nick Woods, attached to Explosive Ordnance Disposal Mobile Unit (EODMU) 5, controls a Mark II Talon remotely operated vehicle (ROV) during a Certification Exercise (CERTEX) on Naval Air Station Whidbey Island, Wash., July 16. Elements of EODMU-1 and EODMU-5 qualified as ready for future operational deployments during the CERTEX, which centered on integrating the two units’ Sailors with a goal of building a cohesiveness that will help them counter undersea threats and contribute to winning the high-end fight once deployed in support of Navy and geographic combatant command mission priorities. U.S. Navy EOD is the world’s premier combat force for eliminating explosive threats so the Fleet and nation can fight and win wherever, whenever and however it chooses. U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Marc Cuenca/Released

Lt. Nick Woods, attached to Explosive Ordnance Disposal Mobile Unit (EODMU) 5, controls a Mark II Talon remotely operated vehicle (ROV) during a Certification Exercise (CERTEX) on Naval Air Station Whidbey Island, Wash., July 16. Elements of EODMU-1 and EODMU-5 qualified as ready for future operational deployments during the CERTEX, which centered on integrating the two units’ Sailors with a goal of building a cohesiveness that will help them counter undersea threats and contribute to winning the high-end fight once deployed in support of Navy and geographic combatant command mission priorities. U.S. Navy EOD is the world’s premier combat force for eliminating explosive threats so the Fleet and nation can fight and win wherever, whenever and however it chooses. U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Marc Cuenca/Released

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