WASHINGTON (AP) -- Army Secretary Pete Geren has ordered the recall of more than 16,000 sets of body armor following an audit that concluded the bullet-blocking plates in the vests failed testing and may not provide soldiers with adequate protection.
The audit by the office of the Defense Department inspector general, to be made public Friday and obtained by The Associated Press, faults the Army for flawed testing procedures before awarding a contract for the armor.
In a Jan. 27 letter to Inspector General Gordon Heddell, Geren said he did not agree that the plates failed the testing. He said his opinion is backed by the Pentagon's top testing director.
Hundreds of thousands of body armor sets have been manufactured over the last seven years. The vests are standard gear for troops in Iraq and Afghanistan.