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This overview is divided into four sections:

Individual Protection
Individual Decontamination
Detection and Alarms
Patient Protective Equipment

Listed under each item are the 13-digit stock number for the item and the TM describing the use and maintenance of the item.


This section includes standard "A" chemical defense equipment (CDE) issued to each soldier which consists of the following:

M17A2 Protective Mask
M24 and M25A1 Protective Masks
M40 and M42 Protective Masks
Battle Dress Overgarment
Chemical Protective Gloves and Overboots

Mask, Chemical-Biological: Field,

4240­01­143­2017 ­ X­Small

4240­01­143­2018 ­ Small

4240­01­143­2019 ­ Medium

4240­01­143­2020 ­ Large

TM 3­4240­279­10

TM 3­4240­279­20&P

The M17A2 protective mask is designed to protect the wearer from field concentrations of all known chemical and biological agents and riot control agents. When worn correctly, the mask will protect the face, eyes, and respiratory tract. Wearing the ABC­M6A2 Hood (4240­00­021­8695) attached to the M17A2 mask further protects the soldier's head, neck, and shoulder areas.

The protective mask contains two M13A2 Filter Elements (4240­00­165­5026). Filtration through these elements involves two separate but complimentary mechanisms: 1) impaction and adsorption of agent molecules onto ASC Whetlerite Carbon filtration media and 2) impaction on a high efficiency particulate air filter paper of particles with an average diameter of 0.3 microns.

Maintenance and, when necessary, replacement, of the crucial filter elements are of the utmost priority. The filters must be replaced whenever any of the following occurs:

the elements are immersed in water;
the elements are crushed, cut, or otherwise damaged;
excessive breathing resistance is encountered;
the "ALL CLEAR" signal is given after exposure to AC (hydrogen cyanide) or CK (cyanogen chloride);
30 days elapse in the combat theater of operations (the filters must be replaced every 30 days);
Supply Bulletin 3­30­2 indicates lot number expiration;
when ordered by the unit commander.

Two styles of optical inserts for the protective mask are available for soldiers requiring visual correction. The M17 optical insert (6540-01-060-0611), which has a wire frame, is considered the safer of the two and is more easily fitted into the mask; a prong-type optical insert (6540­00­935­6573) is also available.

Fitting the drinking tube of the mask into the M­1 canteen cap (4240­00­930­2077) allows the wearer to drink while in a chemical environment, but restriction of fluid intake to water obtained in this manner is likely to lead to dehydration, especially when protective clothing must be worn in a hot environment. Drinking before anticipated donning of the mask must therefore be enforced through the use of command directed drinking.

NOTE: Before the wearer drinks via the M-1 cap and the drinking tube, he must verify by using M8 Chemical Detection Paper that the canteen and coupling half are not contaminated. Task 031-503-1006 STP 21-1-SMCT, October 1990.

Mask, Chemical­Biological: Aircraft, ABC­M24

4240­00­808­8799 ­ Small

4240­00­776­4384 ­ Medium

4240­00­808­8798 ­ Large

Mask, Chemical­Biological: Tank, M25A1

4240­00­994­8751 ­ Small

4240­00­994­8750 ­ Medium

4240­00­994­8752 ­ Large

TM 3­4240­280­10

TM 3­4240­280­20&P

Each of these masks, properly fitted and worn, protects the wearer's face, eyes, and respiratory tract from field concentrations of all known chemical and biological agents and riot control agents. The ABC­M7 protective hood (4240­00­021­8695) used with the M24 mask or the ABC­M5 protective hood (4240­00­860­8987) used with the M25A1 mask will in addition protect the head, the neck, and the shoulders. The aviator draws the M7 hood over his helmet after first donning the M24 mask. Filtered air for each of these masks arrives through a hose attached by a metal connector and coupling to an M10A1 CB canister (4240­00­127­7186) containing the same ASC Whetlerite carbon found in the M13A2 filter elements of the M17A2 mask. The M10A1 CB canister must be changed whenever one of the following occurs:

the coupling or the connector is bent or heavily rusted;
the coupling-to-canister connection is not tight;
the canister has cracks, breaks, or dents over 1/4 inch deep;
over 10% of the seams are corroded;
the canister has been immersed in water;
excessive resistance to breathing is encountered;
Supply Bulletin 3­30­2 indicates lot number expiration;
60 days have elapsed after exposure to a toxic chemical agent.

Only the prong-type of optical insert fits the M24 and M25A1 masks and because neither mask possesses a drinking tube, wearers must become familiar with the standard procedure detailed in STP 21­1­SMCT, October 1990, Soldier's Manual of Common Tasks, Task # 031­503­1006: Drink From Canteen While Wearing Your Protective Mask. Differences between the masks include the following:

The ABC-M24 mask has an M­8 oxygen supply adapter (4240­00­848­6074) to be used at altitudes requiring oxygen or when using a bail­out bottle.
The M133/U microphone for the M24 mask and the M116G microphone for the M25A1 mask permit use of the on board intercom system and the vehicle radios, respectively.
The M17 carrier for the M24 mask is worn on the right side to prevent interference with controls, especially on fixed-wing aircraft; the M13A1 carrier is worn on the left side.

Chemical­Biological Mask: Field M40

4240­01­258­0061 ­ Small

4240­01­258­0062 ­ Medium

4240­01­258­0063 ­ Large

Chemical­Biological Mask: Combat Vehicle M42

4240­01­258­0064 ­ Small

4240­01­258­0065 ­ Medium

4240­01­258­0066 ­ Large

TM 3­4240­300­10

TM 3­4240­300­20&P

When properly fitted and worn, each of these masks will protect the wearer's face, eyes, and respiratory tract from field concentrations of all known chemical and biological agents and riot control agents. The CB hood (4240-01-260-8723) affords additional protection for the head, neck, and shoulders.

Because both the M40 and M42 masks have drinking tubes positioned around the outlet valve assembly, it is possible to drink water in a chemically contaminated environment. First, the soldier must use M8 paper to verify that the M-1 canteen cap is not contaminated before attaching the drinking tube to the cap. Wearers operating armored vehicles will thus be able to drink water in a contaminated environment.

The only optical insert approved for use in the M40 mask or the M42 mask is a wire-frame type (6540-01-253-8169).

Innovations in these masks include the following:

Each mask is molded with two voicemitters, one in the front of the mask and one over the cheek. The cheek voicemitter allows the use of the radio­telephone handset without any interference from the protective mask and is interchangeable with the cheek filter canister.
Each mask uses a NATO standard external filter canister (4240­01­119­2315) of the same type used by both Germany and England. The unit NBC NCO may position the canister either on the soldier's right cheek or on his left cheek to allow him to fire the M16A2 rifle from his left or right shoulder, respectively.
Each protective mask is molded in silicone rubber to allow easy fitting of all wearers, including those who require an extra­small M17A2 mask.
Each mask is made with an in­turned sealing surface around the entire inner edge of the mask. This allows for a more comfortable seal on the soldier's face.
The eyelenses in each of these masks are 35% larger than the M17A2 mask eyelenses and permit greater range of vision.

Battle Dress Overgarment (BDO)

8415­01­137­1700: XXX­Small 8415­01­137­1704:Medium

8415­01­137­1701: XX­Small 8415­01­137­1705: Large

8415­01­137­1702: X­Small 8415­01­137­1706:X­Large

8415­01­137­1703: Small 8415­01­137­1707:XX­Large

Desert Battle Dress Overgarment (DBDO)

6 Color

8415-01-324-3084: XXX-Small 8415-01-324-3088: Medium

8415-01-324-3085: XX-Small 8415-01-324-3089: Large

8415-01-324-3086: X-Small 8415-01-324-3090: X-Large

8415-01-324-3097: Small 8415-01-324-3091: XX-Large

Desert Battle Dress Overgarment (DBDO)

3 Color

8415-01-327-5346: XXX-Small 8415-01-327-5350: Medium

8415-01-327-5347: XX-Small 8415-01-327-5351: Large

8415-01-327-5348: X-Small 8415-01-327-5352: X-Large

8415-01-327-5349: Small 8415-01-327-5353: XX-Large

The BDO and DBDO have been designed with new features that increase protection in a chemical environment and that make wearing the suit less of a heat burden. The suit has more activated charcoal than the previous model, a novel outer cloth weave, and a outer cloth "scotch­guard" type treatment, resistant to liquid chemical agents. Because of the increased amount of charcoal, the BDO and DBDO can now be worn in an uncontaminated environment for 30 days following removal of the garment from its vapor-protective bag; this wear time may be extended past 30 days at the discretion of the unit commander. The suit may be worn for 24 hours in a contaminated area, but once the suit has been contaminated, the wearer must replace the suit by using the MOPP gear exchange procedure described in STP 21­1­SMCT, Soldier's Manual of Common Tasks, October 1990, Task # 031­503­1023, Exchange MOPP Gear. The discarded BDO must be incinerated or buried.

The BDO/DBDO is presently produced in both woodland and desert camouflage patterns. The suits have large butyl rubber patches sewn into the elbows and knees to prevent liquid chemical agents from penetrating the suit at these points.

The BDO/DBDO adds approximately 11 pounds to the weight already carried by the soldier. In addition, the BDO prevents heat exchange with the environment and may add add, depending on the wearer's level of exertion, 10EF to 15EF to his ambient temperature and heat burden. When wearing the BDO/DBDO at MOPP 1 or MOPP 2 and complete encapsulation is not required, certain modifications to the uniform are authorized:

The trouser leg closures may be unzipped.
The waist tabs loosened.
The jacket unzipped.
The sleeve velcro closures opened.

This overall loosening of the BDO/DBDO will allow heat to escape as walking and other movements induce a bellows action of the suit against underlying clothing and skin. Because of the weight of the BDO/DBDO, field suspenders (8440-00-221-0852) should be used to allow support of the trousers and as much comfort as is possible.

Chemical Protective Gloves & Overboots

Gloves, 0.025in thickness

8415-01-144-1862 - X-Small

8415­01­033­3517 ­ Small

8415­01­033­3518 ­ Medium

8415­01­033­3519 ­ Large

8415­01­033­3520 ­ X­Large

Gloves, 0.014in thickness

8415-01-138-2497 - Small

8415-01-138-2498 - Medium

8415-01-138-2499 - Large

8415-01-138-2500 - X-Large

Gloves, Tactile 0.007in thickness

8415-01-138-2501 - Small

8415-01-138-2502 - Medium

8415-01-138-2503 - Large

8415-01-138-2504 - X-Large

Green Vinyl Overboots (GVO)

8430-01-048-6305 - Size 3 8430-01-049-0882 - Size 9

8430-01-048-6306 - Size 4 8430-01-049-0883 - Size 10

8430-01-049-0878 - Size 5 8430-01-049-0884 - Size 11

8430-01-049-0879 - Size 6 8430-01-049-0885 - Size 12

8430-01-049-0880 - Size 7 8430-01-049-0886 - Size 13

The chemical protective gloves are made from butyl rubber and are impermeable to chemical agents. The GVO is made from vinyl which will protect the wearer against NBC agents and environmental effects. Both may also be decontaminated and reissued. Both the 0.025in thick and 0.014in thick gloves and GVO boots, when worn with the leather combat boot, can be used for 24 hours in a contaminated environment. After a complete visual inspection and decontamination with a 5% HTH solution they may be worn again. The 0.007in thick tactile gloves must be inspected and deconned with the 5% HTH solution within 6 hours after being in a contaminated environment. Once deconned the 0.007in thick tactile gloves may be re-used. In an uncontaminated environment, the gloves and boots can be used for 14 days and if found to be serviceable after a thorough inspection can be used for 14 days more. When working with petroleum products care must be taken not to allow these products to contact the boots and gloves. Should petroleum products contaminate the boots and gloves, wipe-off and air dry the boots or gloves within two minutes. If this can not happen within two minutes then new boots or gloves must be obtained immediately.

The green vinyl overboots are authorized for wear in a contaminated environment, but when the green vinyl is contaminated by a liquid agent, the agent will desorb as a vapor over a prolonged period of time. Decontamination of the rain boots while on chemically contaminated terrain would involve almost constant interruption of the mission and would in most cases be impractical. Therefore the desorption of agent vapors from the GVO must be taken into account when conducting unmasking procedures or entrance procedures into a collective protection shelter.

The gloves and the boots pose safety hazards. The 0.025in thick and 0.014in thick gloves degrade tactile ability and in a cold environment will not provide adequate protection against cold injury. The 0.007in thick gloves have been produced to answer the need for selected personnel to have excellent tactile ability while wearing these gloves, but offer no protection from cold. These thin gloves must be issued along with the 0.025in thick gloves and only worn while performing those tasks requiring good tactile use of the hands and fingers.

For further information on these items see FM 3-4, NBC Protection, 29 May 1992, Chapter 1. Individual Protective Equipment.


The preceding section provided an overview of the primary items of chemical defense equipment which, when used correctly, will prevent contact with agent in typical battlefield concentrations. The problem of decontamination arises when some soldiers, because of bad training, bad discipline, or bad luck, become exposed to liquid agent despite the availability of protective masks and clothing. This section addresses the two skin decontamination kits and one equipment decontamination kit that are currently in the inventory.

The kits are fairly simple in design and function, and instructions for their use are straightforward and easily committed to memory. Because of the potency of liquid nerve agents and the rapidly occurring tissue damage caused by vesicants, every soldier must be able to conduct an effective decontamination of all exposed skin automatically and without referring to the instructions printed on the kits.

The kits are

Decontamination Kit, Skin: M291
Decontamination kit, Individual equipment, M295
Decontamination Kit, Skin: M258A1

Decontaminating Kit, Skin: M291


TM 3­4230­229­10

The introduction of this kit marks a new approach to skin decontamination. The M291 kit consists of six identical packets each containing a mixture of activated resins. This resin mixture both adsorbs liquid chemical agents present on the soldier's skin and neutralizes agents. The mixture consists of a adsorbent resin, a resin containing sulfonic acid, and a hydroxylamine-containing resin. After masking, the soldier opens any packet from the kit, removes the applicator pad, and applies an even coating of resin powder while scrubbing the entire skin area suspected to be contaminated. One applicator pad will decontaminate both hands and the face if necessary. If the face must be decontaminated, then the neck (including the throat area) and the ears must also be decontaminated using a second applicator pad.

The black resin powder residue will provide a visual confirmation of the thoroughness of application and will not cause any skin irritation even after prolonged contact with skin. However, normal precautions must be observed so that the powder does not enter open wounds, the mouth, or the eyes. This kit will also be used for training; no training aid will be produced. The issue is 20 - M291 Skin Decon Kits per box.

Decontamination Kit, Individual Equipment: M295 (DKIE)


TM 3-4230-235-10

The M295 DKIE allows for the decontamination of individual equipment through physical removal and absorption of chemical agent with no long term harmful side effects. The kit consists of a carrying pouch containing four individual decon packets, enough to do two complete individual equipment decontaminations. Each packet contains a mitt filled with the same decon powder used in the M291 SDK. Two packets will decon the protective gloves, M16A2 rifle, the chemical protective helmet cover, the protective mask hood, load carrying equipment (LCE) and accessories, the mask carrying case and the protective boots.

The decon mitt will only remove surface liquid contamination. The equipment which has been decontaminated can still pose a vapor hazard, due to absorbed liquid chemical agent desorbing as a vapor.

The M295 DKIE will issued to the squad at its lowest point of issue. The M295 DKIE is packaged in a "squad box" with 80 kits in each box. The squad members should be given at least one kit and the packets for one complete decontamination can be carried in the cargo pocket of the BDO trouser.

As with the M291 SDK, the M295 DKIE will be used for both training and combat.

Decontamination Kit, Skin: M258A1


Training Aid, Skin Decontaminating: M58A1


6910­01­113­2434 ­ Refill Kit M58A1

TM 3­4230­216­10

The M258A1 skin decontamination kit is currently the standard item for the removal and neutralization of liquid chemical agents on the skin. This kit contains three No. 1 packets and three No. 2 packets. Packet No. 1 adsorbs and neutralizes the G-type nerve agents, whereas Packet No. 2 adsorbs and neutralizes the nerve agent VX and liquid mustard. The contents of the packets are as follows:

Packet No.1 Packet No. 2
Hydroxyethane 72(+ or - 2)% Chloramine B
Phenol 10(+ or - 0.5)% Hydroxyethane 45(+ or - 2)%
Sodium Hydroxide 5(+ or - 0.5)% Zinc Chloride 5(+ or - 0.5)%
Ammonia 0.2 " 0.05% Water

The soldier must remember that when using packet Number 1, one full minute of wiping the contaminated area is needed. The soldier must also remember that wiping with packet Number 2 must continue for two minutes. Speed and accuracy are critical in the proper use of this kit, and the soldier must have committed the decontamination procedure to memory. The decontamination solution is a skin-burn hazard in sensitive areas of the body and must be kept out of the eyes, the mouth, and any open wounds. The kit must also be protected from freezing and from prolonged exposure to temperatures greater than 110 F, and the glass ampoules in Packet No. 2 must be protected from premature breakage, which could render the kit useless. None of these disadvantages characterize the M291 kit, which will soon replace the M258A1 kit.

The M58A1 training aid was developed to avoid unnecessary exposure to the caustic components of the M258A1 kit during training and is used in the same manner as the M258A1 skin decontamination kit. The training aid and the decontamination kit are distinguished by packaging color: The M258A1 kit contains olive drab packets in an olive drab plastic case whereas the M58A1 training aid contains blue packets in a black plastic case. The content of the M58A1 packets is 2­propanol and water.

For further information on these items see FM 3-4, page 124, and FM 3-5, NBC Decontamination, 17 November 1993, Chapter 2.


This section will describe the equipment issued for detection and identification of chemical agent liquid and vapor in the environment. For both the individual soldier and the unit, these items of equipment are the primary means of identifying the presence and type of chemicals on the battlefield and of determining when a safe condition exists.

These equipment items are

Paper, CM Agent Detector: M8
Paper, CM Agent Detector: M9
Chemical Agent Detector Kit: M256A1
Chemical Agent Monitor
Automatic Chemical Agent Alarm: M8A1
Water Test Kit, Chemical Agents: M272

Paper, CM Agent Detector: M8


The M8 detector paper is the only way of identifying the type of chemical agent present in liquid form on the battlefield. Each soldier carries one booklet of M8 paper in the interior pocket of the protective mask carrier. A soldier encountering an unknown liquid suspected of being a chemical agent must don and check his mask and don the attached hood within 15 seconds, alert others in the vicinity, and then proceed to put on all of his chemical protective clothing. He then removes the booklet of M8 paper from his mask carrier, tears a half sheet from the booklet, and, if possible, affixes the sheet to a stick. Using the stick as a handle, the soldier then blots the paper onto the unknown liquid and waits for 30 seconds for a color change. The resulting color may then be compared to the colors on the inside of the front cover of the booklet to identify the type of liquid agent encountered.

G: Nonpersistent nerve: Yellow
H: Blister: Red
V: Persistent Nerve: Olive Green or Black

False positive can occur if liquid insecticides are on the surface being tested. Antifreeze and petroleum products will also cause false positive.

Paper, CM Agent Detector: M9


TM 3-4230-229-10

The M9 detector paper detects the presence of liquid chemical agent but does not identify either the specific agent or the type of agent encountered. Each soldier carries one thirty-feet-long and two-inch-wide roll of M9 paper with adhesive backing to facilitate wrapping a strip of the paper around a sleeve and a trouser leg of the BDO. (Because the indicator dye in the paper is a potential carcinogen, gloves should be worn during application, and the paper should not contact the skin.) The paper is a dull off-white or cream color in the absence of liquid agent but contains an indicator chemical that when dissolved in liquid agent turns a reddish color. When the soldier sees this color change, he must immediately mask, alert others, and, if there is any possibility of skin exposure, proceed immediately with skin decontamination.

The M9 paper will detect nerve-agent or blister-agent droplets as small as 100 microns in diameter. False positive may be seen if the paper is exposed to antifreeze, liquid insecticide, or petroleum products. The soldier's attention to possible interfering substances on the battlefield can help in the later interpretation of a color change in the M9 paper in the absence of confirmatory tests for agents but does not relieve him of the obligation to mask and take other appropriate measures immediately after seeing a color change in the detector paper.

Chemical Agent Detector Kit: M256A1


TM 3­6665­307­10

Simulator, Detector Tickets,

Chemical Agents: Training, M256A1


TM 3­6665­320­10

The M256A1 Chemical Agent Detection Kit is designed to detect and identify chemical agents present either as liquid or as vapor and consists of a) a booklet of M8 paper (previously described) to detect agents in liquid form and b) twelve foil-wrapped detector tickets containing eel enzymes as reagents to detect even very low concentrations of chemical vapors. Instructions for the use of the detector tickets appear on the outside of each of the foil packets and in a separate instruction booklet in the kit. The following chart shows the agents detected by the M256A1 Kit:

Agent Detected Symbol Class
Hydrogen Cyanide AC "Blood" (cyanide)
Cyanogen Chloride CK "Blood" (cyanide)
Mustard H Blister
Nitrogen Mustard HN Blister
Distilled Mustard HD Blister
Phosgene Oxime CX Blister
Lewisite L Blister
Nerve Agents V and G Series Nerve

By following the directions on the foil packets or in the instruction booklet, a soldier can conduct a complete test with the liquid-sensitive M8 paper and the vapor-sensitive detector ticket in approximately 20 minutes. During the test, the ticket must be kept out of direct sunlight, which speeds evaporation of the reagents; evaporation is also accelerated by waving the detector ticket in the air, so the ticket should be held stationary during all parts of the test.

The M256A1 trainer simulator was developed to provide realistic training while avoiding unnecessary exposure to potentially carcinogenic reagents in the M256A1 detector kit. The M256A1 trainer contains 36 pre­engineered detector tickets and a instruction booklet. The pre­engineered detector tickets show color changes comparable to those seen when the M256A1 detector kit is used in clean or contaminated environments. Each training aid detector ticket has a specific code printed on the outside of the foil package. A list of codes is also printed on the inside of the training aid box under the lid, and instructions for the use of the simulator are also included. The codes are

T-401 DANGER ­ NERVE: G agents or VX.
T-402 DANGER ­ BLISTER: HD (sulfur mustard).
T-403 DANGER ­ BLISTER: CX (phosgene oxime).
T-404 DANGER ­ BLOOD: AC (hydrogen cyanide) or CK (cyanogenchloride). (STRONG RXN indicates AC or CK in HIGH CONC)
T-404A DANGER ­ BLOOD: AC (hydrogen cyanide) or CK (cyanogen chloride). (WEAK RXN indicates AC or CK in LOW CONC)

Chemical Agent Monitor (CAM)


TM 3­6665­331­12&P

The CAM, which is used to detect nerve and blister agents as vapors only, uses a 10-mCi nickel­63 (Ni63) beta-particle radiation source to ionize airborne agent molecules that have been drawn into the unit by a pump. The resulting ion clusters vary in mass and charge and thus also travel at different rates in an applied electrical field. Comparison of the mobilities of the different ionic species to electronically stored standards allows an onboard microcomputer to determine the type of agent and its relative concentration. A liquid crystal display (LCD) presents these data as a series of concentration-dependent bars in a G mode for G agents and VX and in an H mode for blister agents.

The CAM detects agent vapor in that volume of air drawn by the pump into the sampling chamber of the instrument. It follows that the inlet port must not come into contact with a suspected area of evaporating agent on a surface but must nevertheless approach within a few inches of the site of suspected contamination. Because of the variation in agent concentration from one spot to another depending upon wind velocity and other environmental factors, numerical displays of agent concentration in typical units would be impractical and unreliable. Accordingly, the display warns of a low vapor hazard (1 - 3 bars visible), a high vapor hazard (4 to 6 bars visible), or a very high vapor hazard (7 - 8 bars).

Chemical Agent Alarm: M8A1


TM 3­6665­312­12&P

The M8A1 Automatic Chemical Agent Alarm (ACAA) is the only remote continuous air sampling alarm in the U.S. Army at present. This alarm will sample the air for the presence of NERVE agent vapors (GA, GB, GD and VX) only. The M8A1 alarm uses 0.01 millicurie of americium­241 (Am241), a source of alpha particles, to ionize airborne agent molecules drawn into the sampling chamber by a pump module. A detector cell analyzes the resulting ion clusters and compares their masses and charges with electronically stored standards to detect the presence of nerve agent vapors; the operator may specify whether the alarm itself is audible, visual, or both.

The system consists of the M43A1 detector, as many as five M42 alarm units, and various power supplies. The detector cell and alarm units are most commonly found in a fixed-site configuration. Normally, the M43A1 detectors are placed facing into the wind no more than 150 meters outside the unit perimeter, with no more than 300 meters between detectors and when possible no more than 400 meters between the detector cells and the alarm units. WD­1/TT 6145-00-226-8812 telephone cable connects the detector cells and the alarm units. The alarm units are placed throughout the facility. A typical Mobile Army Surgical Hospital (MASH) has three M8A1 ACAAs, and a Combat Support Hospital (CSH) has seven M8A1 ACAAs.

Water Testing Kit, Chemical Agents: M272


TM 3­6665­319­10

The M272 water test kit was designed and fielded to answer the need for a test to detect water contamination by nerve agent, blister agent, cyanide ("blood" agent), or lewisite. The kit will operate between 32EF and 125EF. An enclosed instruction card enables a soldier to conduct all the tests required to identify the threat agents. The kit will detect the following chemical agents at the concentrations indicated:

Chemical Agent Symbol(s) Concentration (mg/l)*
Cyanide AC 20.0 as CN­
Mustard HD 2.0 ­­
Lewisite L 2.0 as As+++
Nerve G/V 0.02 -­

* Concentration reliably detected by kit tests. Water containing agents in lesser concentrations is permissible for short-term use (up to 7 days) in both cold and warm regions as long as the daily consumption per person does not exceed 5 quarts. Each kit contains enough reagents for tests on 25 separate water samples. The operator can easily conduct the full range of tests in 20 minutes when the temperature is between 50EF and 105EF; at lower temperatures, the water samples and the nerve agent ticket should both be warmed for 10 minutes before beginning testing. Water that is too hot may cause foaming in the detector tubes for lewisite, mustard, and cyanide; so water at temperatures between 105EF and 125EF should be cooled for at least five minutes to reduce its temperature to 105E or cooler.


In this section three items that have been fielded will be discussed. They are the

Patient Protective Wrap
Decontaminable Litter
Resuscitation Device Individual Chemical (RDIC)

Patient Protective Wrap


AMEDD doctrine calls for the treatment as far forward as possible of casualties from the integrated battlefield. Because treatment often mandates removal of the BDO and precludes donning replacement BDOs, a patient protective wrap has been developed. This wrap is sturdy and lightweight, weighing approximately 2.7 kg, and it protects the patient from all known chemical agents for up to six continuous hours. It is not designed for use by more than one patient and must be discarded after use.

Easy patient insertion into the wrap is provided by one continuous zipper around the outer edge of the top sheet, and observation of the patient is possible through an impermeable transparent window at the head of the wrap. Below the window, a small transparent pocket is large enough to hold a field medical card or other medical record, and two protected sleeves next to the window permit the passage of IV tubing.

The wrap is designed to be used on a litter but can itself become a field-expedient litter if necessary. Along the sides of the wrap are sleeves through which poles can be inserted; these sleeves have handholds for manual carries when poles are not available. It is recommended that the patient wear the mask while in the wrap, but this is not a requirement. However, before the casualty is put into the wrap a cardboard insert must first be placed into the wrap to hold the window material away from the patient's face.

Although the protective wrap is permeable to both oxygen and carbon dioxide, the rate at which carbon dioxide is produced by a typical patient exceeds by a small amount the rate at which this gas passes through the wrap; and for this reason the patient should not be left in the wrap for longer than the recommended maximum of six hours.

Decontaminable Litter


Contaminated casualties arriving at a medical treatment location will in most cases require decontamination prior to definitive treatment. This decontamination process will require the use of the limited supplies of equipment organic to the treatment unit. Ideally, equipment in limited supply should be capable of complete decontamination using field-available methods. However, in tests conducted by the Chemical Research, Development & Engineering Center (CRDEC), canvas litters exposed to liquid blister agents and then decontaminated still desorbed vapors for 72 hours after all surface contaminants were removed.

The decontaminable litter was thus developed to replace the canvas litters currently in use. The new litter is made from a monofilament polypropylene that has high tensile strength and low elasticity. The fabric does not absorb liquid chemical agents and is not degraded by decontaminating solutions. The fabric is flame retardant, highly rip resistant, and treated to withstand exposure to weather and sunlight. The fabric has a honeycomb weave which results in a rough non-slip surface, and liquids easily pass through the 40% of the surface area that is open. The carrying handles retract into the metal pole frame, for a closed total length of 83.5 in (212.1 cm), to allow for loading the litter onto the UH­60 helicopter. The handles have two open positions, 90.0 in (228.1 cm) and 91.6 in (232.7 cm). The first position is a NATO standard and the second position was provided to allow increased gripping comfort by litter bearers. The aluminum poles have been designed to provide direct gripping surfaces for litter stanchions. All metal parts have been painted with Chemical Agent Resistant Coating (CARC) paint.

Resuscitation Device, Individual Chemical


The Resuscitation Device, Individual Chemical (RDIC) is a ventilatory system consisting of a compressible butyl rubber bag, a NATO standard C2 canister filter, a nonrebreathing valve, a cricothyroid cannula adapter and a flexible hose connected to an oropharyngeal mask. The mask is removable from the distal end of the flexible hose for connection of the hose to the cannula adapter. The butyl rubber bag resists the penetration of liquid chemical agent which may be on the chemical protective gloves of operator and is easily decontaminated. The elasticity of the outer cover limits airway pressure to a maximal value of 70 cm H2O (70 mbar). The device will deliver up to 600ml of filtered air per cycle at a rate of 30 cycles per minute.

The RDIC will be fielded 1 per air ambulance, 1 per ground ambulance and 1 per Chemical Agent Treatment, MES.






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