British Army EOD teams to get Gasket 3 next generation vehicle
The new Gasket 3 bomb disposal vehicle’s Initial Operating Capability (IOC) was announced this week, following extensive consultations with the soldiers who will be using the new vehicle, the British Army reports on its website.
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Starter bomb disposal RCV displayed in front of two new Gasket vehicles at DVD 2022 (Picture source: British Army)
Gasket 3 deployed on its first operational tasking on Tuesday 20 September supporting Staffordshire police, with soldiers disposing of a recovered hand grenade. The vehicle is the final addition to the Gasket fleet, part of a £60 million project that sees a range of 300 new vehicles from first response vehicles to a new 4X4 medium-scale vehicle.
Introduced at the Defence Vehicle Demonstration, the Gasket 3 will be used by 11 Explosive Ordnance Disposal and Search (EOD&S) Regiment and the Diving Threat Exploitation Group (DTXG) of the Royal Navy who provide EOD cover UK-wide.
Operations Group Centre, formed of 721 EOD Squadron and Bravo Diving Unit 1 form the IOC grouping. They deal with all explosive incidents in the Midlands and southeast in support of the civilian emergency services. Threats could include disarming from Second World War bombs to improvised explosive devices (IEDs) and sea mines.
Gasket 4 displayed at DVD 2022 at DVD 2022 (Picture source: British Army)
The Gasket 3 is based on the Mercedes Benz Atego, extensively modified for EOD by Cambridge-based Marshall Land Systems, and will ensure Army and Navy EOD Operators keep on doing what they do best – keeping the country safe.
Gasket 3 is the Heavy EOD response vehicle and carries the Starter bomb disposal RCV and bespoke EOD equipment such as the Mk Six bomb suit, X-ray equipment and other specialist tools. It gives a real upgrade in terms of capability, enabling EOD operations to be delivered with maximum efficiency and safety.
Warrant Officer Class 2 Baskerville of 11 EOD&S Regt said: “During trials, we found the rain cover provided was a little complex and time consuming to put up. I’ve been assessing the new design from Marshalls and it has really improved. It’s great that user feedback has made an actual difference.”
Development of the Gasket programme – containing four separate vehicle projects - began six years ago. Gasket 1 and 2 started to roll off the production line in 2020. The fleet was built to reach remote locations fast whilst also meeting the security of the team.
Gasket 3 and Gasket 4 displayed at DVD 2022 (Picture source: British Army)