Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Report finds DOD awarded MRAP contracts to companies that couldn't deliver

A US Marine Corps RG-31 Cougar Mine Resistant Ambush Protected Vehicle rests on its front axle after an I.E.D. detonated directly under the vehicle. The blast was pushed outward instead of straight up due to the vehicle's “V”–shaped undercarriage. Of the five service members in the vehicle, two received concussions and two others received minor burns.

WASHINGTON (AP) - The Defense Department put U.S. troops in Iraq at risk by awarding contracts for badly needed armored vehicles to companies that failed to deliver them on schedule, according to a review by the Pentagon's inspector general.

The June 27 report, obtained Wednesday by The Associated Press, examined 15 contracts worth $2.2 billion dollars awarded since 2000 to Force Protection, Inc., and Armor Holdings, Inc.

The auditors found several contracts issued by the Marine Corps on a sole-source basis to Force Protection even though it knew there were other manufacturers that might have supplied the vehicles in a more timely fashion.

The Marine Corps determined that Force Protection of Ladson, S.C., was the only supplier that could meet the urgent delivery schedule for the vehicles.

The inspector general's report, however, concludes otherwise. It says the company "did not perform as a responsible contractor and repeatedly failed to meet contractual delivery schedules for getting the vehicles the theater."

Read the rest at AOL News

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