DefenceSynergia (DS) has just had sight of the AJAX – Noise and Vibration Review of 15th December 2021. The conclusions of which speak for themselves:
Nothing in this Review detracts from the fact that GDUK has designed and built what MOD maintains is thus far a vehicle that is not fit for purpose and does not meet the contracted specification. The root cause that allowed a vehicle to cause potential harm to Army personnel through noise and vibration during the trials process was not a failure of a single individual or Defence Organisation. It was a complex combination of the Armed Forces’ relationship to harm and weaknesses in MOD’s acquisition system. The impact of Covid was also felt, both delaying trials and making communication more difficult
From a cultural perspective, the Army did not believe it was potentially causing harm to people, especially from vibration, as it was tacitly expected that soldiers can and should endure such issues. Society and the law expect MOD to do better and requires it to have systems in place that protect its people from harm.
Within the acquisition system, safety is not viewed as an equal partner to cost, schedule and military capability, and the culture in MOD does not currently ensure safety is considered within strategic decision-making.