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Body Armor

Discussion in 'Health and Fitness' started by Lo2w, May 22, 2018.

  1. Lo2w

    Lo2w Forum Captain

    This may be a problem specific to my division. We require ballistic vests on every calls. I volunteered to sit on the union safety committee and we're looking at policies regarding wearing the vest in the hotter summer temps. Curious what other agencies may have on the books for work/rest, different uniform policies in the heat etc. May be a good question for any tactical medics.
  2. Summit

    Summit Critical Crazy

    You could get cooling vests to wear under the armor.
  3. Airlinepilotmedic

    Airlinepilotmedic Forum Probie

    We have best on all our apparatus but are only required to wear them on certain call types. Do you have to always have yours on?

    CANMAN Forum Asst. Chief

    You're running in an area where things are that bad that the vests are required on every single call? Sounds way overkill to me. Even the medics in Baltimore City don't wear a vest every single call and I would venture to say they are in and out of more S then maybe where you're working? Any kind of tactical medic that works in that capacity for an entire shift is also only going to don a carrier when actually going to a mission. That being said I would focus on developing some protocols that highlight what type of calls they should be worn on vs. when they are not needed.

    I am not sure what the statistics show, but I would like to believe I am at a pretty low risk of being shot tending to grandmom with respiratory distress and will certainly take my changes without a vest on that call for example.

    I'm sure there will be some people who believe in the "you never know what might happen on any given call" theory, and while that is true I like to think that most of us have some type of situational awareness to know when stuff is going sideways and it's time to leave/get out of said situation.

    The same theory could be applied to turnout gear, but we don't sit in the engine in full gear for alot of calls, because of heat and fatigue issues.... Common sense should apply.
  5. DrParasite

    DrParasite The fire extinguisher is not just for show

    Elizabeth NJ Police /Ambulance Service Bureau used to mandate vest use 24/7/365. Since they moved over to the FD, they don't do that anymore, but they might be a good agency to reach out to.

    I don't know about you, but where I used to work, the occurrences of violent penetrating trauma increased during the summer time, compared to cooler parts of the year.

    Why don't you ask people who wear their vests their entire shift? Ask your cops what they do, and how they mitigate the heat. Reach out to your local urban department, and see what they do, as well as what their response would be if their officers didn't want to wear their vests on duty because of the heat.

    But you still wear your gear when you go to an AFA right? do you wear it on an MVA? I agree with not wearing gear if you aren't on a call, but EMS units typically have a higher UHU than suppression units.

    BTW, I'm a firm believer that wearing a vest "just on certain calls" is as useful as not wearing a vest at all, because violence can occur on calls that aren't dispatched as violent scenes. the career threatening assault that our Aussie counterpart experienced is a prime example of that. Just something to think about.
  6. VFlutter

    VFlutter Flight Nurse

    I am not an expert on wearing armor at work but i just picked up a plate carrier for a class and saw a few products that seem like they would be nice...

    Qore ice plate. Hydration carrier you freeze then wear inbetween the vest and you. Cools you down and provides water as it melts.

    Also a uniform like the 5.11 PDU that looks professional but has the mesh center section for wearing under armor.
  7. NysEms2117

    NysEms2117 ex-Parole officer/EMT

    1. Sounds absurd to me personally. as @CANMAN said, some of the worst places in america don't even require that. However below are some helpful tips i have.

    Couple things I did that saved me when i worked in LE. Because tbh this isn't a serious problem IMO, i've worn a vest with uniform in 95 degrees with 80-95% humidity countless times, you sweat yes, but its not anything unsafe. The normal Hydration is key, and if you don't mind looking like an idiot when your in-between calls its certainly do able(when i was driving i would roll my pantlegs up a bit, ect ect). I also opened the passenger side of my car windows a little bit, and topped out the AC, allows for the most ventilation. Google says go to coolcop.com. Never looked because i didn't need it, but it might work??

    One of them little mini fan/water bottle things... put that in your rig. you may laugh but damn does it help a lot.

    Baby powder/talcum powder IS YOUR FRIEND.

    Under armor Dri-Fit loose tshirts worked the best in my opinion (dont get black or navy blue if you can help it).

    Believe it or not the pants you wear, you will sweat plain and simple, your upper body is otherwise occupied(with the vest), so get very well ventilated pants.

    The 5.11 PDU works pretty well, I have never tried any of the ice plates, because i have never needed them.
  8. Lo2w

    Lo2w Forum Captain

    Thanks all...I work in Cleveland if that answers the "where the @#$& do you work?" question.

    I'll look at the PDU, that was one thing we were looking at was a Summer uniform of sorts.
  9. Bullets

    Bullets Forum Knucklehead

    Trenton NJ EMS wears outer vests, they just open the sides when they arent on jobs. They have a more utilitarian carrier

    Jersey City makes them available but not required, however they wear out vests in a carrier that looks like their uniform shirt. they we an undershirt that has a moisture wicking body with uniform style sleeves and upper chest.

    I would say that going to an outer vest is your best bet, but as NYS said, when i worked as a LEO we just sucked it up and hydrated as much as possible. I would wear a lighter boot in the summer that was basically all mesh for ultimate breathability
  10. Jim37F

    Jim37F Forum Deputy Chief

    All I'll say is that there were times even in Afghanistan the threat level was assessed to be low enough we wouldn't wear armor outside the wire (granted that was usually either in the immediate vicinity of our base...but still

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