Posts Tagged UXO


Posted on July 5, 2010 with No Comments


by: Eric W. Barton

EOD Master Crab

Quality and job specific training have always been important to me for both business and professional development.  Their importance has never been more essential than as my company, RELYANT, begins work on our unexploded ordnance/demining contract in Afghanistan. This contract requires very specific training because the people that search for the unexploded ordnance (UXO) are putting their lives at risk every day, not to mention they are doing this in an austere and sometimes hostile environment.

Although my military experience is in intelligence and my civilian education concentrates in business, I have become much more educated in the UXO and demining industries because my company now executes this type of work. I find the six months to a year of intense education and training these men and women go through fascinating. The preparatory classes along with the 30-50+ weeks of training on specific types of ordnance (bombs/missiles, improvised explosive devices (IEDs), nuclear, and underwater ordnance) would overwhelm the average person, not to mention the physical requirements they must maintain.

To be a Senior UXO Supervisor (the most senior position on a UXO project) you must have 10 years of experience, with five of those years in a management role.  The other management positions are UXO Quality Control Specialist and Safety Officer; both of these positions require 8 years experience. From there you have UXO Tech III, II, and I. As you can see, quality and experience are essential.

As an American Society of Quality, Certified Quality Manager (ASQ CQM OE), I insist on a high level of quality throughout myorganization, similar to the rigorous quality standards that must be maintained on UXO projects. Our management staff ensures impeccable quality standards are being met or exceeded for the safety of their own personnel as well as the success of the project. High quality standards are what keep technicians from missing a landmine or UXO and adding another victim to the more than 5,000 Afghan citizens that have been either killed or injured by these devices since 2001.

I have the utmost respect for the men and women who do this type of work both in the military as well as for civilian contractors like RELYANT. It epitomizes the importance of well qualified people doing quality work.

To get up-to-date news and happenings of my company visit,, or


Posted on June 17, 2010 with No Comments

MARYVILLE, Tenn. (June 16, 2010) – RELYANT, LLC, a Maryville-based company providing worldwide strategic support services, has received notification of award for a $49 million contract with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Afghanistan Engineering South District. RELYANT will provide unexploded ordnance (UXO) removal and mine clearance in southern and western Afghanistan.

Anti Tank (AT) mine in sand, about 350 mm in diameter

The company anticipates adding up to 200 new employees at its facilities in Afghanistan and Maryville. The five-month contract competition began in January. The contract has two, one-year option periods that can be exercised after the one-year base period.

RELYANT’s proposal efforts were led by the company’s Explosive Ordnance Disposal expert, Terry Collins, who has a 20-year background in the UXO industry. Other factors attributed by the company to this success are their current presence in Afghanistan and understanding of the challenges faced when working in country.  RELYANT has employees located on several of the operating bases that give them flexibility in-country.

According to estimates from the United Nations, Afghanistan is littered with more than 10 million land mines and other UXO, many of which date to the 1980s Soviet conflict. Since 2001, more than 5,000 citizens have been killed or wounded by UXO in Afghanistan, according to Millennium Development Goals, Islamic Republic of Afghanistan Country Report 2005.

UXO puts Afghan citizens and coalition forces at risk. Hazards can be encountered during efforts to improve water, transportation and other basic infrastructure to citizens, during construction of new structures such as schools, hospitals and other public facilities, or during delivery of goods, services and fuel to Coalition Force bases. RELYANT’s work under this contract will provide a safer environment for all stakeholders in the ongoing efforts to stabilize and rebuild the country.

Various types of UXO

Other services provided by RELYANT in Afghanistan include application of spray foam insulation to housing, Third Country National Escort, vehicle maintenance construction, life support, and convoy and secure trucking.

“This award reflects both the dedication of our employees and the strong performance of our current work in Afghanistan,” said President and CEO, Eric W. Barton. It’s an important next step in our ongoing efforts to serve our nation’s interests on a larger stage. Our growth thus far in 2010 is on track to exceed our expectations, and this contract is an important part of thatequation.”

Ken Biles, Vice President, Business Development said, “This award helps position RELYANT for the next phase of its growth. However, we’re equally proud of the fact that the contract can have a positive impact on our hiring, including new employees in Maryville and overseas.”

RELYANT is a global “turn-key” provider of solutions to complex projects. The company offers services including construction, life support, demining, logistics/procurement, security, and IT communications. RELYANT is headquartered in Maryville with offices in San Antonio, Iraq, Afghanistan and Uganda. For more information visit our website