The Pentagon wants to unload 13,000 mine-resistant, ambushed-protected trucks, so they’re literally giving them away.
The armored trucks, know as MRAPs, have been to the war-torn Middle East, saved soldiers lives, and now they will likely be turned into scrap metal unless they can find a home, according to the Wall Street Journal. The Pentagon is eying ways to create a more nimble fighting force, and 40,000 pound MRAPs, each standing over 10 feet tall, don’t fit the bill.
“We’ve notified our friends and allies that we have MRAPs available and if they want them they can have them,” said Alan Estevez, deputy undersecretary of defense for acquisitions, technology and logistics, told the Journal. “They’re a great vehicle, but they’re an expensive vehicle to maintain. Part of that is because they weren’t built to be sustained over time.”
Almost 200 of the vehicles have landed in the hands of local police departments since August and there are pending requests for an additional 750 of them, according to the Journal. Due to the the vehicle’s machine-gun turrets, private citizens and business are exempt from the giveaway.
“The price was right because it was free and it fit with what we need it to do. It stops bullets. It keeps you from getting shot,” Florence County, S.C. sheriff’s Capt. John Crouse told the Journal. The department used their latest acquisition to replace an armored vehicle the SWAT team had used since the 1970s.
Ohio State University’s campus police department reportedly acquired one of the mine-resistant vehicles as well. The university declined the Journal’s request for comment.
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