May 11,2007 00:00
WASHINGTON - U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates says troops in Iraq will be getting new vehicles that provide twice as much protection against roadside bombs.
Mine Resistant Ambush Protected Vehicles, known as MRAPs, will be phased in to replace the armored Humvees currently being used in Iraq, USA Today said Thursday.
Officials say roadside bombs cause 70 percent of all U.S. casualties in Iraq. The MRAPs feature a V-shaped hull that disperses explosions from below, the newspaper said.
A total of 7,700 MRAPs have been ordered for delivery over the next 18 months at a cost of $8 billion over the next 18 months. The U.S. Army currently has 18,000 armored Humvees in Iraq.
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