Saturday, October 10, 2015

Soldiers warned on wearing defective glasses

By Lance M. Bacon

Eyeglasses that failed ballistic tests four years ago are available in Self Service Supply Centers, and the Army wants them off the shelves now.

What's more, the Army is warning soldiers against wearing the inferior glasses.

All Army Action Message calls on the supply centers to stop stocking and issuing Pyramex Venture II glasses, national stock number 4240-01-500-6173, and directs commanders to ensure their personnel are wearing Army-approved eyewear.

Pyramex Venture II Safety Glasses are not compliant with Military Combat Eye Protection performance specification requirements. (Courtesy of Amazon)

The Army did not respond to questions on how the unauthorized glasses turned up in the supply centers, or how many have been distributed. Units typically place bulk eyewear orders to reduce cost. Soldiers also are able to purchase eyewear through the Army and Air Force Exchange Service and Military Clothing and Sales stores.

PEO Soldier spokesman Alton Stewart confirmed that Pyramex Venture II is not compliant with Military Combat Eye Protection performance specification requirements. The commercial, off-the-shelf eyewear was in the supply chain prior to March 2006. But new rules required the lens, frames and nose pieces of all eyewear to pass ballistic testing.

"Though the eyewear lens was able to stop the projectile in accordance with the specification noted in the test report, the frame would break, and the lens often fell out," Stewart said of the Venture II eyewear. "The item was removed from the [authorized protective eyewear list], and the NSN blocked for Army users."

The following eyewear meets Army standards for ballistic protection:

• Arena Flakjak

• ESS Land Ops (worn over glasses)

• ESS Profile NVG (Rx capable)

• ESS Crossbow (Rx capable)

• Revision Desert Locust (Rx capable)

• Smith Optics Outside the Wire (Rx capable)

• Oakley SI Ballistic M Frame 2.0 (Rx capable)

• Revision Sawfly (Rx capable)

• Smith Optics Aegis (Rx capable)

• Wiley X Talon (Rx capable)

• Wiley X SG-1

• Wiley X PT-1 (Rx capable)

• UVEX Genesis (Rx capable)

• UVEX XC (Rx capable)

Complete details and stock numbers for each is available at :

Eye injuries represent 10 percent of combat injuries, according to Army data. As such, PEO Soldier allows the use of approved, commercially available products to increase the use of protective eyewear. All approved eyewear provides ballistic fragmentation and ultraviolet protection, and are available with both clear and sunglass lenses.

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