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thedrifter
01-23-08, 08:25 AM
01-18-2008

Trooper's Eyewitness Account Of ESAPI Plate Failing To Stop Second AK-47 Round

Editor's Note: The following account was submitted by an eyewitness to the informal "ballistic test" of an ESAPI (Level IV) plate. Some identifying information has been deleted to protect the source. This is his report of the event, in his own words. Any other observers out there who care to report successes or failures are encouraged to contact me at sftteditor@aol.com. All sources must be willing to establish bona fides before their information will be reported.

Just wanted to drop you a note. My last deployment was in Afghanistan. I did some research and ended up getting some Dragon Skin level 3. With all the controversy, I've traded emails with Pinnacle Armor several times. After all, I was wearing their armor on the "Scary Road of Death" as we called it (between Bagram and Kabul). I was supposed to go to Iraq this fall and was going to purchase the Dragon Skin level 4, but don't need it now.

Anyway, I've had the opportunity to see some explosives and firearms demonstrations.

The demo included two rounds of 9mm and two rounds of 7.62mm NON-armor piercing rounds going into a Level 4 Interceptor plate. Nothing scientific about the demo, just a vest hanging on a post, shot from about 25 yards.

One of the 7.62 rounds made it through! [Emphasis added.]

The weapons guy said that after one round hits a plate, there's a 7" "triangle of death" centered on the strike, which will most likely allow another round to penetrate.

Now I'm no rocket scientist, but I'm thinking there are a lot of fully-automatic weapons being fired in the direction of my brothers and sisters in arms, and the likelihood of two rounds impacting a plate seems fairly high.

I'm pretty upset by the results, but the Marines and some other soldiers (including some SF guys) looked like they were going to be sick.

Just thought you'd like to know, and I saw it with my own two eyes.

EYEWITNESS TROOPER

Ellie