In what is now becoming a regular occurrence, the US Army is recalling body armor plates that may have failed to meet manufacturing specifications.
According to the June 14th news release, the US “Army recently issued a message for all troops and units to inspect their body armor, specifically the Enhanced Small Arms Protective Inserts, or ESAPI, in search of a specific model that was not made according to contract requirements.”
The US Army claims that “the recalled plates have passed all ballistic tests so Soldiers who may have been using the plates were always properly protected.” Nevertheless, they are recalling the plates “to receive replacement plates under warranty” with the manufacturer.
According the US Army News release, “the nonconforming plates were produced by Armor Works, who have provided 150,000 ESAPI plates, about 10 percent of the Department of Defense’s total supply. Of these 150,000, about nine percent (13,500) were not made according to specification.” Found below is information on how to identify defective ESAPI plates manufactured by Armor Works.
ESAPI plates that should be turned in to the Central Issue Facility for replacement will display the contract number SPM1C1-08-D-1023 along with one of two design codes – DD3V2 or MP2.
The contract number and design code are both located on the data tag on the back of the plate. The contract number is in the upper right corner of the data tag, and the design code is the last three to five characters of the DOM/LOT number.
It should be noted that SFTT recently asked the US Army to let the public know the test results of 2,000 potentially cracked ceramic plates which the US Army has steadfastly stated that there has never been a single incidence of cracked ceramic plates. Could it be that clear evidence of “cracked ceramic plates” now exists and these deficient ceramic plates were sufficient to demand a recall? Also, for the US Army to suggest that the recalled plates passed all ballistics tests seems to overlook the scathing report by the Government Accountability Office which recommended independent testing of military body armor.