The 36-year-old son of former New York governor Mario Cuomo was in an armored Humvee, one of four responding to a call about a burning police car on Tuesday.
At the scene, police spotted bodies lying on the road, which had been booby-trapped, Cuomo said.
"It rocked the entire vehicle, blew out the tires on two of the vehicles, destroyed much of the glass, rocked the vehicles in a very, very big way," Cuomo said. "A piece of shrapnel was barely stopped by this armored door. It came within fractions of an inch of going through the entire vehicle."
In a telephone interview with The Washington Post, Cuomo said he was amazed at the calm professionalism of the troops he was with when their disabled vehicles came under small-arms fire.
"I know if I had been there with any other group of individuals, I would not be able to have this conversation," he said.