Infantry: Marines Get New Body Armor
October 9, 2006: The U.S. Marine Corps is reequipping with new body armor. The Modular Tactical Vests protect more of the upper torso, while providing more freedom of movement. While weighing the same as the current vest, the new vest feels lighter because the weight is distributed more efficiently. In addition, the marines are making padding for helmets mandatory. After many complaints from marine riflemen, the marines officially switched from the old system, which suspended the helmet on the marines head with webbing, to one that includes pads. The new system prevents head injury when there is "blunt-force impact", like from an explosion. These changes will reduce deaths and severe injuries a few percent, which mean a whole lot if you happen to be one of the marines in question. All marines will benefit from the fact that the Modular Tactical Vests is more comfortable to wear. This comfort also saves lives, because fatigue in combat leads to making mistakes, and that leads to marines getting hurt. The new Modular Tactical Vests cost about $560 each, and the initial order is for 60,000.