USArmy Orders Soldiers to Shed Dragon Skin or Lose insurance

#1
http://www.sftt.org/main.cfm?action...nKey=cmpDefense&htmlCategoryID=30&htmlId=4514

Two deploying soldiers and a concerned mother reported Friday afternoon that the U.S. Army appears to be singling out soldiers who have purchased Pinnacle's Dragon Skin Body Armor for special treatment. The soldiers, who are currently staging for combat operations from a secret location, reported that their commander told them if they were wearing Pinnacle Dragon Skin and were killed their beneficiaries might not receive the death benefits from their $400,000 SGLI life insurance policies. The soldiers were ordered to leave their privately purchased body armor at home or face the possibility of both losing their life insurance benefit and facing disciplinary action.
 
#3
Is this not similar to the warnings we get before taking part in military training ie assault course where you are warned to wear issue boots and that if injuried that could count against you, or you go down with a cold injury when using a non-issue sleeping bag on exercise ie artic training?

Is there a UK policy on wearing your own body armour?
 
#6
In the boring days in NI there was a directive from HQNI warning soldiers to only wear issue kit as the Criminal Injuries awards would be significantly reduced if non-issue articles were worn and may have contributed to the injury. I'm sure PAX will have managed to squeeze this into their policies too, just for the sh1ts and giggles.

Your employer is responsible with providing you with the appropriate equipment, if they do and you choose not to wear it you are not only responsibel for your own injury but your commander has a liability for not enforcing the existing policy.
 
#7
PartTimePongo said:
http://www.pinnaclearmor.com/body-armor/tactical.php

Which UK agency would have to test and ok this kit for use?
That would be Defence Clothing IPT

However, I would be very cautious about stories about the latest bit of 'wonder kit'. Many of these stories are planted in the media and on the internet by companies seeking to promote their products. There are plenty of recent examples, from the latest 'wonder gun oil, to 'blended metal bullets' and of course, body armour.

The various acquisition organisations spend quite a bit of time keeping an eye on the marketplace for new developments, but an awful lot turns out on closer examination to be from snake-oil salesmen.
 
#8
The article is misleading at best.

There is nothing in the SGLI agreement that states that only authorised armour may be worn. You will note that (a) The source website is one of Hackworth's, which is somewhat unbiased, and (b) there is no 'official' statement anywhere. All it says is 'soldiers were told by someone higher up', with no knowledge of who that someone was, if he was qualified to make such statements, or if that someone was even correct.

My guess is that the someone was just trying to cover his ass by making sure soldiers used only issue equipment in case it came back to bite him, and he invented that threat as a hypothetical.

NTM
 
#11
No plates?? As with anything in life - you just can't get passed the physics.

Yes, the vest may stop rounds from penetrating, but without plates to dissipate the kinetic energy, you'll get injured/die from the blunt trauma.

I have to wear this stuff every day and I have the biggest, heaviest set of plates I could find - pain in the arrse, but I know that if the worst happens, I'm going to get up and walk away, not spend weeks in hospital (at best) with smashed sternum/ribs & bruised/injured internal organs etc etc.
 

BuggerAll

LE
Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
#12
one-one-delta wrote:

Is this not similar to the warnings we get before taking part in military training ie assault course where you are warned to wear issue boots and that if injuried that could count against you, or you go down with a cold injury when using a non-issue sleeping bag on exercise ie artic training?

Barbs wrote:

Your employer is responsible with providing you with the appropriate equipment, if they do and you choose not to wear it you are not only responsibel for your own injury but your commander has a liability for not enforcing the existing policy.

I could be straying into the area of squaddy urban myth but with regard to the first points made above I've been told that the MoD would have to prove that the issue boots would have protected you from the broken ankle or whatever. With regard to the secomd point the fact that the employee has been stupid does not absolve ethe employer from his responsibility, although it may mitigate the damages etc. The other problem is that are you as a commander going to rigidly enforce all existing policies and only allow issue kit - or are you going to allow some deviations that have become accepted practise or because you like a bit of kit. Oh and although you would be bulletproof as a commander how would you feel if one of your soldiers was killed or badly injured and it was shown that had he been wearing the dragon skin he wanted to wear he would have been OK?

Edited to add another thought:

Bomb Doctor: Are you saying that you are wearing non standard kit: ie the biggest plates you could find. Seems to me that what the 'dragon skin' wearers are doing is trying to get the best armour they can buy - whether they are right about that or not I don't know - although I'm sure you are right about the kinetic energy.
 
#13
Bomb Doctor: Are you saying that you are wearing non standard kit
Alas, I am no longer bound by the always flexible & common sense military regulations 8O .............. which is why I can deviate from the normal military practice of buying the cheapest, smallest set of plates possible that cover only a small proportion of your vital organs.

Body armour, if you need to wear it, is one of those things you don't want to 'save money' on...... Get the biggest, best set your pocket can stretch to.

As for the military saying you can't wear your own...... Looking at the current issue plates and the set I have....... I know which ones I'd rather be wearing if I got shot. As long as you buy a superior spec and are happy in your own mind - why not? I'd bet that as long as you could prove your set was an equal or higher spec than the issue ones, I'd be quite happy to stand up in court and argue the toss. I'm sure the MOD would run a mile if the papers got hold of that story anyway (God forbid it should ever rear its ugly head).
 

BuggerAll

LE
Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
#14
Further to my last rambling I wonder how the British Army would react if a CO recieved an LM along the following lines:

"I have recently purchased Dragon Skin body armour which is demonstrably superior to the issue CBA... blah blah. I have had pockets sewn onto it to accept the issue plates (if I ever get any and they are not then taken off me to issue them to someone else).

I have been told that I may not use this piece of kit but must use issue CBA. Of course as this is a lawful order I will obey it, but I'd like it in writing.

My reasons for making this request are that if I am injured as a result of not wearing the superior Dragon Skin then this order will form part of the evidence in any court action I may bring"

ATKINS

Good Soldier
 
#15
At the beginning of the `Troubles`in NI,soldiers were issued-Flack Jackets,mostly bummed off the Yanks,who were still serving in `Nam, however the IRA,thought that they were bullet proof,and aimed at the heads of the soldier.Casualties were pretty low,and a lot of squaddies had some really close shaves.

Some smart arrse,journalist, then decided to spill the beans, and consequently a lot of soldiers were killed,as the scum then changed their tactics,aiming for the body.Those who survived the shot through the FJ,then spent hours,in surgery having the ballistic filling,picked out of their wounds.

At first the RUC received armoured plates,then squaddies got them.

Some reports,state that 80% of yank casualties,could have been avoided,if plates were bigger.If I were in Iraq,I´d definitely,buy some extra plates,for without the plates, body armour is useless against anything except shrapnell.Being hit by a lump of metal at nearly 1000 mts per second,is like being hit by a car,with the force concentrated into about 10mm.

Without the plate to spread the impact,you will certainly be killed,the hydraulic shock,or whatever you wish to call it,will destroy body tissue,lungs and heart will turn to a bloody ...............wear the plates!
 

Goatman

ADC
Book Reviewer
#16
CF http://www.arrse.co.uk/cpgn2/Forums/viewtopic/t=29801/postdays=0/postorder=asc/start=45.html

...er...the point being

HE WORE THE KIT HE WAS ISSUED WITH
HE TOOK NO NOTICE OF SMART ARSSES TELLING HIM NOT TO BOTHER WITH THE PLATE
HE'S STILL BREATHING

...... in the late 80's I used to deal with companies making both helmets and body-armour. Neither the GS helmet nor the issue CBA we get was designed to stop high velocity rounds. The ceramic insert is in recognition of this. Your lid WILL stop a 9mm pistol round and the CBA WILL stop an Uzi round at 25 metres - cos I saw both demonstrated first hand.

Both helmet and CBA are more about protecting vulnerable parts of the body from eg shrapnel/ground-strike material than a direct hit from a assault rifle.

....one of the guys I was dealing with related the dit about being asked to stand in front of a prospective client while said client unloaded an AK into him, wearing his own jacket....needless to say my contact declined to give the demo in the terms described....

Oh, and there is no Trades Descriptions Act in the US either - money back guarantee may be difficult to collect if the product fails to perform iaw with the brochure ! 8)
 
#17
"The soldier reiterated Friday's reports that any soldier who refused to comply with the order and was subsequently killed in action "could" be denied the $400,000 death benefit provided by their SGLI life insurance policy as well as face disciplinary action."

I love this sentence. First you are unfortunate enough to be slotted by the enemy. Then some poor bugger has to drag your casket in front of the Badge where the casket is screamed at for a bit followed by being propped up in the guard room for your extras.
 
#18
midnight said:
Being hit by a lump of metal at nearly 1000 mts per second,is like being hit by a car,with the force concentrated into about 10mm.
I don't know a huge amount about ballistics, only some very basic physics, but wouldn't the weapon's firer have the same amount of force concentrated into the area of the butt plate of the weapon (every action has an equal and opposite reaction).

Probably talking out me hoop, but I wouldn't mind having this explained to me.

In words of one syllable. :?
 
#19
To work out if your air-rifle requires an FAC you use this formula to calculate the muzzle enery in ft/lbs

weight (grains) times the square of the velocity(f.p.s) and divide by 450240

The 450240 is equal to 2 x 32.16 f.p.s (the acceleration of gravity) x 7000 (grains in a pound)

I can't be asked to find out how many grains 7.62 is or hows fast its going when it hits body armour at 200m but if you can, some of your answer will be in there.

I believe that the recoil energy is used in
1, The recocking action and ejecting the empties.
2, Spread across the butt and absorbed by you.

I'm sure if I got any or all of that wrong then there will be 100 spotters posting the correct info faster than a gnats wee reaches the
floor.

BGL
 
#20
Some reports,state that 80% of yank casualties,could have been avoided,if plates were bigger.If I were in Iraq,I´d definitely,buy some extra plates,for without the plates, body armour is useless against anything except shrapnell.
Those recent reports are the subject of some controversy. Not because "The government didn't want to provide" but because "We can't turn these people into two-legged tanks a la Mobile Infantry'

Those plates are plenty big enough right now, they're already restricting mobility to a point. Are we putting soldiers out there just to provide armoured targets for the opposition to punch through, or do we actually expect them to run around and to combat-like things? Political pressure is forcing new armour upon the army that the Army doesn't particularly want.

NTM
 

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