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Vehicle-borne improvised explosive devices (VBIEDs)

Vehicle bombs fall into three categories:

  • large vehicle-borne improvised explosive device (LVBIED). An LVBIED is a lorry or truck filled with explosives. These vehicles enable terrorists to carry very large amounts of explosives, possibly several tons, to a target and cause casualties and destruction over a range of hundreds of feet.
  • vehicle-borne improvised explosive device (VBIED). A VBIED is a car or van filled with explosive, driven to a target and then detonated.
  • under vehicle improvised explosive device (UVIED). A UVIED is a type of small, 'booby-trap' improvised explosive device placed in, on, or under a vehicle, and designed to explode when the vehicle moves.

Vehicle bombs typically use an improvised explosive; sometimes a flammable substance is added to enhance the effect e.g. liquefied petroleum gas (LPG). The bomb can be made in advance at a safe location some distance from the target. The explosive may be in the load-carrying area of the vehicle, concealed in the chassis or behind panels, or in one or more containers such as a beer kegs, dustbins, wheelie bins or large suitcases. Once assembled, the bomb can be delivered at a time of the terrorists' choosing and with reasonable precision, depending on defenses. It can be detonated from a safe distance using a timer or remote control, or detonated on the spot by a suicide bomber.

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