U.S. Armor will be featured in the “Whistleblowers” documentary TV show on CBS tonight at 10 p.m. Eastern and Pacific time and 9 p.m. Central time. The episode will focus on the Zylon ballistic fabric story.
The episode is titled “The Case Against Second Chance” and centers around “whistleblower” Dr. Aaron Westrick, a former director of research in charge of composite development and training at Second Chance. The company disregarded all of his warnings about the material, which later resulted in at least two incidents where law enforcement officers were seriously injured by gunfire and at least one additional case where the injuries were fatal. U.S. Armor calls this “an incredible story of corporate greed that recklessly endangered the lives of law enforcement officers all across the country and resulted in the largest recall of ballistic products in history.”
Zylon was a body armor fabric produced by the Toyobo Corporation that was first used exclusively by Second Chance Body Armor and later by many of the other major manufacturers, except U.S. Armor. U.S. Armor says it didn’t use Zylon “because it didn’t always work like it was supposed to; its ballistic properties were inconsistent at best.”
The production crew from CBS spent an entire day filming at U.S. Armor Corporation, in addition to conducting a one-on-one interview of the company’s president Stephen Armellino by Judge Alex Ferrer. U. S. Armor Corporation was the only major body armor manufacture in the United States that refused to produce any commercial body armor using the Zylon fabric. “It would have been irresponsible,” U.S. Armor says.
After the initial failures, the National Institute of Justice completely prohibited Zylon’s continued use in ballistic products and a recall of all Zylon vests was initiated.
Like this story? Want to know why tens of thousands of law enforcement people receive stories like this in their email twice a week?