Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Marines get new flame-resistant uniforms

ARLINGTON, Va. — Marines should start receiving a new, lightweight uniform designed to provide more protection against burn injuries at the end of this month, said John M. Hernandez, a project officer for Infantry Combat Equipment.

The Corps plans on issuing about 120,000 of the new uniforms this year, and all Marines in the U.S. Central Command theater of operations should have the new uniforms by summer, Hernandez said.

Eventually, every Marine will have two of the new uniforms, Hernandez said...

Marines downrange already have flame-resistant gear, but the new FROG uniform is about a pound lighter than one version of the gear now in use, officials said...

Tests have shown that the new flame-resistant uniform drastically reduces the area of the body that receives third-degree burns in blasts from between 15 percent and 20 percent to 5 percent, said Materials Engineer John Bauer.

As part of that testing, the new uniforms have been engulfed in flames at temperatures of about 1,500 degrees to mimic the initial flash from a roadside bomb, officials said.

From Stars and Stripes