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Vests as uniforms

Discussion in 'EMS Talk' started by OkEMT, Mar 11, 2018.

  1. OkEMT

    OkEMT Forum Crew Member

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    Does anyone wear vests (non-ballistic or ballistic) as their primary uniform? My company is looking at ordering new uniforms and I was curious if anyone was doing this. A vest with a company or service T-shirt underneath for daily ops use. This is an example of something I was looking at. Ballistic would probably be too pricey to outfit everyone, but a non-ballistic version over a t-shirt would look decent I'd think. Thoughts?
     

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  2. DesertMedic66

    DesertMedic66 Forum Troll

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    What would be the point in having a non-ballistic vest?
     
  3. OkEMT

    OkEMT Forum Crew Member

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    For use just solely as a uniform. Don't get me wrong, I'd love ballistics all around but it's just not financially possible for us right now. But for just use as a uniform, my thoughts were - Higher visibility, more (or slightly more) professional-looking than just a t-shirt, ability to change out a velcro embroidered nameplate vs each shirt being personalized for only one medic, etc.
     
  4. DesertMedic66

    DesertMedic66 Forum Troll

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    I would not want a vest in order to look more professional. What a vest will do is make you look more like law enforcement. People don’t like law enforcement. The majority of people like EMS.

    If the vest gets soaked in blood vomit what’s going to happen to it? If it’s going to get washed now we also have to have spare vests for each employee. If they get saturated in blood they should be tossed. That is now going to require you to buy more vests which cost money.

    If you want something more professional than a shirt but less than a class B uniform just go with a polo shirt. They look nice and won’t break the bank when you need to toss them and allow you to have multiple pairs for low cost.

    As far as higher visibility there are several companies that make bright polos or polos with reflective materials in them.

    If this is the primary uniform that means it is going to be worn a lot. In no way at all am I going to be trading vests with @CALEMT and getting his nastiness on my body.

    Maybe it is different in your area but at least here cops do not trade out anything uniform related. Firefighters do no trade out anything uniform related. EMS does not trade out anything uniform related.
     
    berkeman and StCEMT like this.
  5. RocketMedic

    RocketMedic Fancy Book Learnin'

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    I'm going to blow your mind with this word:

    Polos.

    They come in all sorts of colors, they can have pockets, they're durable and comfy and layer well (which vests do not), and Velcro nametapes are silly. Get some polos embroidered. It's not that expensive.
     
    DesertMedic66 likes this.
  6. CALEMT

    CALEMT The Other Guy/ Paramaybe?

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    If I said you have a beautiful body would you hold it against me?

    Seriously, why do you have to drag me into this? OP... class B’s or polos. Way better option than a vest. Besides if you’re getting vests why would they be non-ballistic in the first place?
     
    DesertMedic66 likes this.
  7. NomadicMedic

    NomadicMedic EMS Edumacator

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    I hate polos as a uniform.

    Class B shirts. Blauer SuperShirts are great.
     
  8. Tigger

    Tigger Dodges Pucks Community Leader

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    If you're doing the Class B thing, you can't beat em.

    Also I wear a vest. A Mountain Hardwear windproof fleece. It's real cozy. Has a name tag. Pretty sweet.
     
    AtlasFlyer and NomadicMedic like this.
  9. NomadicMedic

    NomadicMedic EMS Edumacator

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    I have a blauer V neck sweater that’s lined with fleece. Warm AF. Probably the best piece of uniform wear I own.

    I also have a fleece vest. I rarely wear it. It attracts dog hair like crazy.

    Looks like we’re finally going to let our field staff go to job shirts in place of the shell/liner combo.

    Anyway, vests over a t shirt look goofy. Polo shirts look great if you deliver pizzas.
     
  10. Old Tracker

    Old Tracker Forum Captain

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    I cannot even imagine wearing a vest when it's 110 here.
     
  11. DrParasite

    DrParasite The fire extinguisher is not just for show

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    shameless plug for @JSmith27 and https://www.theunityems.com/

    no offense @OkEMT, but I can't see the point of wearing a non-tactical vest as a uniform. I remember watching a paramedic recruitment video (I want to say it was Sussex county De, but i could be wrong), and the biggest thing that stood out was that the majority of their paramedics in the video were wearing vests on medical calls over their uniform shirts. If it's a ballistic one for crew safety, and you wear it all the time (like Cleveland OH EMS does and Elizabeth NJ EMS used to do), than I completely understand; but just to make it a simple uniform? it serves no point, and I bet your crews will hate it.

    Polos are my preferred uniform shirt, more so that the class B shirt. For night shifts (or when crews are sleeping), I will even say T shirt or turleneck with a job shirt over it. T shirts are nice (we wear them all the time at the FD), but the collar and embroidery on a polo is a much cleaner look.

    @NomadicMedic Blaur V neck sweaters are awesome, and warm AF; but many or my coworkers have said they were too warm, especially when going inside, or going from a cold outside (which they are awesome) to a heated inside (where you sweat like crazy).
     
  12. EpiEMS

    EpiEMS Forum Deputy Chief

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    Job shirts & t-shirts are the way to go. Cheap, easy to launder, and non-threatening.

    If I had my druthers, I'd wear something like that - and something that is EMS-specific, not navy blue like PD...
     
  13. hometownmedic5

    hometownmedic5 Forum Asst. Chief

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    If the owners of my company had their way, I'd be working in a tuxedo. They're hyperfocused on image(right, wrong, or indifferent). Shabby looking vest over a tee shirt? I'd have a better chance of getting a forehead mounted marital aid approved than that getup.
     
    NomadicMedic and chriscemt like this.
  14. medichopeful

    medichopeful NRP, ICU RN, CCRN, CEN

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    I think I saw that video as well, and I'm about 95% certain it was actually for New Castle County, DE, not Sussex County (Sussex wears flight suits). When I rode along with SCEMS a year or two ago, I noticed that all of their field-employees were issued vests, but they were the type with just a uniform cover over them (that basically looks like a shirt), not like the one the OP is talking about.

    I don't get the point of a non-ballistic/stab vest as a uniform either. It would be way cheaper to do Class B uniforms or polos (which isn't my first choice, but when done correctly can be very professional).
     
  15. DrParasite

    DrParasite The fire extinguisher is not just for show

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    You're probably right. I knew it was somewhere in Delaware, and couldn't remember which county.

    that other weird part was (IIRC) New Castle is an all intercept system, so you are rarely first on scene; if something is going to go down, wouldn't the first responding crews be as highest risk, compared to the crews that arrived afterwards?

    and I still think having the "vest" be your uniform over an agency T shirt is a poor idea, both i professionalism and function/comfort levels to providers.
     
    medichopeful likes this.
  16. medichopeful

    medichopeful NRP, ICU RN, CCRN, CEN

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    It probably really depends. I worked in a tiered-response system for a while as a basic, and there were plenty of times that the fly-car beat us to the call.
     
  17. cprted

    cprted Forum Captain

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    A lot of people in my area wear these gortex vests. I love mine. Keeps the wind and rain off, but not too warm. Pockets are always handy.
    upload_2018-3-12_15-6-9.png
    upload_2018-3-12_15-6-33.png
     
  18. NomadicMedic

    NomadicMedic EMS Edumacator

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    In DE the medic often arrived waaaaay before the ambulance. And yeah, Sussex issued us all vests, but it was up to you if you wanted to wear it.
     
    medichopeful likes this.
  19. Lo2w

    Lo2w Forum Lieutenant

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    That's the newest one we're issued. Required to wear the ballistic anytime we're in the field. It can come off at hospital, HQ or court. Capture+_2018-03-13-12-54-10.png
     
    Last edited: Mar 13, 2018
  20. epipusher

    epipusher Forum Asst. Chief

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    Another thread with emt’s wanting to be like and look like cops.
     

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