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NCJ Number: 78007 Add to Shopping cart Find in a Library
Title: Use of Bulletproof Vests
Journal: Police Product News  Volume:5  Issue:6  Dated:(June 1981)  Pages:64-67
Author(s): R L Olson
Date Published: 1981
Page Count: 4
Sponsoring Agency: National Institute of Justice/
Rockville, MD 20849
Sale Source: National Institute of Justice/
NCJRS paper reproduction
Box 6000, Dept F
Rockville, MD 20849
United States of America
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This article reviews the history of bulletproof vests, examines various models of soft body armor, and explains how to choose a vest.
Abstract: Officers who wear soft body armor reduce their chances of being killed by a bullet. The new soft body armor, made of Kevlar aramid, was developed in the 1970's to replace the older, heavier bulletproof vests. The new models are categorized into five classes according to the amount of protection they afford. Threat levels I, II-A, and II apply to typical police officers, while threat levels III and IV are for special weapons and tactical teams and special types of police emergencies. All threat levels will stop knives and most other sharp objects. They are also designed to absorb the shock from a bullet's impact so that an officer will not be knocked down or rendered helpless by internal injury. A properly designed and custom-fitted vest will lie flat against body contours and will not show through the uniform. Each reputable company guarantees the ballistic capability of their vest for at least 3 years and carries a minimum of $500,000 liability insurance should the vest fail to stop a round from the weapon for which it is rated. Officers should choose a vest that will protect them in their particular situation. A 2.5 to 3-pound level II-A vest will protect officers against 85 percent of the handguns confiscated by police. Other considerations in choosing a vest are its weight and warmth. Misconceptions about blunt trauma are also examined. A list of manufacturers of soft body armor is appended, and photographs are supplied.
Index Term(s): Body armor/Personal protective equipment; Personal Security/Self Protection; Police safety
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