This article discusses viable options available to law enforcement agencies for the disposal of old body armor.
Most of the materials used to make body armor do not degrade which negates putting them into a landfill. In addition, they are cut resistant and flame resistant. Therefore, when a law enforcement agency needs a different type of armor, due to the increasing threat level, a dilemma occurs on what to do with the old armor. There are several options available to law enforcement agencies in the disposal of old body armor that include: (1) some manufacturers have available equipment to chop the armor into small pieces and recycle them into other materials; (2) use the old armor to provide extra protection inside the door panels of cruisers or behind desks and partitions in work areas; and (3) if the armor is still serviceable, agencies can use the armor for their training academies. Lastly, the National Law Enforcement and Corrections Technology Center (NLECTC)-National is exploring the taking of donations of used body armor for research.
Date Published: January 1, 2001
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