Firefighters from across the metro are working side-by-side with the FBI to solve three mock car explosions. It's all a part of a staged bomb training taking place all day Thursday in Olathe.
Tucked in the back of an Olathe construction site, the FBI - along with teams from the Missouri and Kansas state fire Marshall office, Wichita Fire Department and dozens of teams from the metro - worked together to blow up three cars.
All three explosions could have been deadly if they occurred in real life, according to Olathe fire captain Mike Hall.
The cars exploded one by one, sending large shards of metal and glass high into the air.
The explosions used less than two pounds of explosives, and yet they were able to completely damage the cars. That is pretty incredible when you consider a car bomb in Iraq or Afghanistan typically has 100 pounds of explosives, and is intended to injure dozens of people.
"It's a great example to show folks that even as little as two pounds of explosives would have done that much damage," explained Hall.
Following the mock explosions, investigators combed through the damage to solve how the bomb was triggered, where it was hidden and how it was made.
This training allows local, state and federal teams to see, feel and smell the after-effects of an explosion.
Hall explains if we ever had an explosion like the ones we saw in Boston at the marathon, our local teams can work quickly to track down the culprits.
"Fire explosion investigations are very methodical, very thorough.," Hall said. "And it takes a team approach. The only way to really study how these investigations work is to set the explosions off ourselves."