U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government, Department of Justice.

National Institute of Justice Statement Regarding Second Change Inc. Body Armor "Upgrade" Offer

NCJ Number
Police Chief Volume: 70 Issue: 10 Dated: October 2003 Pages: 157
Date Published
September 2003
1 page
Second Chance Body Armor, Inc (Central Lake, MI) is offering free "upgrades" to the ballistic-resistant panels of Second Chance's Ultima and Ultimax product lines; this report explains the implications of such an upgrading for the testing of the involved used body armor under the National Institute of Justice's (NIJ's) voluntary compliance testing program. which determines armor's compliance with the minimum performance requirements specified in NIJ Standard-0101.04.
NIJ and its National Law Enforcement and Corrections Technology Center (NLETC) administer a voluntary compliance testing program that assesses whether models of ballistic-resistant body armor comply with Standard-0101.04. A number of the Ultima and Ultimax models were previously tested by NIJ when newly manufactured and determined to comply with NIJ standards. Public safety agencies are asking NIJ whether the Second Chance "upgrade pack," when used in combination with their existing Second Chance ballistic-resistant panels, complies with the NIJ armor standard. A model of armor complies with the NIJ standard only when it is constructed identically to the version originally tested and approved through NIJ's voluntary compliance testing program. Generally, the testing of used armor or modified used body armor is outside the scope and intent of NIJ's voluntary compliance testing program. Thus, if the construction of an NIJ-compliant armor model is modified, that model no longer complies with the NIJ standard. In addition, NIJ cannot validate the ongoing performance capabilities of armor models being used by law enforcement agencies, because factors may affect the ballistic-resistant properties of body armor models over time. Agencies are encouraged to exercise caution regarding any armor modifications or add-on accessories, because it is not known how these changes may affect the ballistic-resistant capabilities of the armor.

Date Published: September 1, 2003