Across the United States, the Department of Defense through the National Guard operates 57 Weapons of Mass Destruction Civil Support Teams. There is one WMD CST for each state and territory, with Florida, California and New York each having two teams.
Each team has 22 members who are trained to at least the hazmat tech level and have completed more than 650 hours of high-tech training. The teams work with local and state agencies when there is the threat of WMD incidents or when one actually happens. And they work with other federal agencies such as FBI.
Protecting North Carolina is the 42nd WMD CST, based in Greenville.
Full-time dedicated crew of Army and Air Force personnel who respond anywhere they are needed at any time.
The team trains with federal, state and local agencies on the ground, in the water and in the air.
The team’s biggest challenge is turnover.
In 2019 the team lost its long-time leader to retirement after 31 years of service.
“It’s been a blessing to be here, and I’m going to miss these soldiers most of all,” said U.S. Army Lt. Col. Joel Eberly in a news release at the time. “This was the best assignment I’ve had in my 31 years by far.”