New boots on the ground for Canadian soldiers
In the wake of a striking new review of Canada’s military, and promises of a 20-year vision for the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF), the Department of National Defense has confirmed a new, high-tech, painstakingly engineered form of transportation for soldiers in the field. After years of niggling displeasure, CAF members can anticipate a sigh of relief.
The department is buying new boots.
“We’re aiming to get the solicitation on the streets by the end of August,” Lieutenant-colonel Gordon Edwards, director of soldier systems program management for the CAF, confirmed to Torstar on Wednesday. It’s been just three years since the government signed onto $11.7 million in contracts for their current footwear.
“The Land Operation Temperate Boot doesn’t seem to have met the needs of the soldiers the way we hoped that it would,” Lt.-col. Edwards admitted. The new boots have elicited a range of complaints, from material breaking down to zippers breaking apart in harsh weather.
While the army conducted a user trial prior to purchase — “which is probably one of the first times I think we’ve done it for boots,” Lt.-col. Edwards added — the then-positive results haven’t held as well long-term.