De-mining - information needed

Discussion in 'Sappers' started by The_Duke, Feb 1, 2007.

Welcome to the Army Rumour Service, ARRSE

The UK's largest and busiest UNofficial military website.

The heart of the site is the forum area, including:

  1. The_Duke

    The_Duke LE Moderator

    I have a business enquiry from an NGO which carries out demining using the "Racking" method.

    I have no idea what this is, and assumed it was a form of medieval torture. Google has not helped so far.

    Can anyone help me out with information on this technique?
  2. no idea either, and I used to be in the business! can drop a few e-mails see if someone else knows.
  3. The_Duke

    The_Duke LE Moderator

    Thanks - glad it was not just me being daft.
  4. The_Duke

    The_Duke LE Moderator


    It was from a Scandanavian country, so it is quite possibly a type. It also makes sense in that the group involves large numbers of LECs, so the technique would suit that type of workforce.

    Great help, many thanks.

  5. The 'Raking' Method believe it or not is a method that has been used to some success by the Sri Lankan Forces, under the eyes of very wary but eventually accepting, British Supervision, guys who have been in this line of work for many years. They employ very long rods with a large rake head at the end when searching areas of sand they know only contain small AP Blast mines, no bounding Frag etc.

    Sounds very bizarre and certainly not a method I have ever used or supervised the use of, but apparently it works with little or no casualty rates! I have heard several mines have been set off using this method but as the deminers were wearing full PPE, visors down, flak neck protective area over the base of the visor etc. they were at little danger of being injured. I was very sceptical of this as I've written several new demining procedures in the civilian world and just couldn't get my head around someone with a rake searching for mines! but have been on site when AP mines on their sides below the surface have been set off at arms length and minimum injury sustained by the person doing the prodding so it makes sense in some ways! just don't try this at home :thumright: especially against a Bounding Fragmentation Mine, it may hurt!

  6. yes it does sound bizarre.

    almost sounds like a vietnamese method relayed to me by a Mine Action advisor, civvy type, who said they would form a long line with metal detectors, at 1m intervals, and sweep the field, in the style of outside areas. another line would follow behind marking indications with white cones. when they ran out of cones they stamped a heel mark in the earth behind the mine :wtf: :wtf:

    but that's another topic......friend e-mailed back pretty much the same answer as gundulph. and he was pretty sceptical about it, and not sure if it met UN standards on mine clearance.
  7. The_Duke

    The_Duke LE Moderator

    Thanks for the help. It is for an NGO working in the middle east, and they have used this technique for 5 years with no loss of life or serious injury.

    My worry was about using LECs for mine clearance as I always assumed it was a highly skilled and specialist task, not something to be taught to and then practiced by non specialists.

    Thanks again,

  8. Actually it is taught to locals usually by former Military Personnel (although not always, as there are several chaps involved in Humanitarian Demining who have never been in the Military but have learned the job working with various Organisations or Companies) and is usually taught over several weeks to the 'International Mine Action Standard' (there are set procedures, measurements, standards etc. laid down in IMAS as a Guideline but one which must be adhered to as local Mine Action Centre's inspect all aspects of a Mine Clearance task from the set up, emergency drills, method of clearance, equipment being used and correct protective equipment being worn through to all aspects of the task) the training culminates in quite severe tests both theory and practical, if someone is not up to it and fails aspects of the testing they will not be given the end Certificate, newly qualified deminers will be gradually introduced to a mine clearance project, it takes time for the deminer to be proficient enough to gain any kind of productivity, they undoubtedly over time and under stringent supervision do become specialists in their field and progress to 'Team Leaders' and possibly further to Quality Control Officers, Inspectors etc.

    Hope this helps, and bare in mind the average locally trained deminer usually comes from a poor background, villages etc. and does the job because of a need to support his or her family.

  9. Just for reference - the MITC (Mines Information and Trg Centre/ Minley International Travel Centre) are there to offer information on humanitarian mine clearance as well as mines awareness.