The ACU will soon have zipper shoulder pockets like the one shown here on the Army Combat Shirt. (Staff)
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The Army is putting new shoulder pockets with zippers on the ACU in hopes of making the uniform more user-friendly.
The shoulder pockets of both arms will soon have a side entry, as opposed to a top entry, said Command Sgt. Maj. Doug Maddi, of PEO Soldier, the office that procures and fields soldier equipment.
The side entry will make access easier when wearing body armor, Maddi said. It will be fastened with a zipper, similar to the Army Combat Shirt and will be about an inch longer than the current ACU shoulder sleeve pockets.
The decision to update the sleeve came directly from soldier feedback on post-combat operation surveys. The Army wanted to give soldiers an easier time accessing the pockets and more room to get their hands inside them.
“We are always looking to make our clothing and equipment better,” Maddi said via email.
The changes to the ACU top’s sleeve pockets will be available in 2015.
Soldiers will not have to replace their current ACU top. The modified blouses will gradually phase in as older versions become unserviceable and replaced.