Dear friends, we are sharing a contribution post by Anthony McGrath / SafeGuard CLOTHING™ about The Technical Specification of a Tactical Bullet Proof Carrier.
The modern tactical bulletproof vest is a modular system comprised of separate pieces of bullet resistant materials that are specially designed to defend the most vulnerable sections in the body. As the name implies it can be used as a complete system or as modules that can be taken off or put on depending on the risk involved.
Parts of a Modular Tactical Vest
Front Carrier and back carrier with shoulder straps: These are called carriers because they are made with soft bulletproof materials that also house rigid ballistic plates. Body armor suppliers such as safeguardclothing.com have constructed these soft armor plate carriers after years of feedback from LEO. These plates will protect the officer from high velocity armor piercing rounds. (More on this later.)
Yoke and Collar/Throat protector: They may be installed on the hook and loop on top of the back and front carriers. They protect your throat and your neck from injury; the throat protector has to be disengaged when dealing with water.
Groin and Lower back protectors: These are optional modules that protect their respective areas and are attached to the front and the back carriers.
Side plate pockets: These are attached to the cummerbunds to provide side protection; they also house rigid ballistic plates made either from clay or composite materials.
Cummerbunds and cummerbund panels: They provide the security for your vest and will close in front of your body with hoop and loop.
Quick release: This is a loop that will go on one of the side pockets that is already equipped with a side protection rigid ballistic plate. It disassembles the vest in case of emergencies.
Yib Yab strap: It can go instead of the shoulder buckle and will help you shoulder your weapon.
Stand-alone plate and side SAPI plates: These stand-alone plates are made of different materials such as ceramics, polyethylene or even steel. They are specially designed to withstand the kinetic force of a high velocity projectile. All those materials have very specific uses and specs. The ceramics tend to be less expensive, of moderate weight and moderate thickness, but it is brittle and can be damaged if mishandled. The steel is good protection (level III) but increases your risk of ricochet. The SAPI (small arms protection inserts) protect your sides and are usually made of the same material as the front and rear stand alone hard armor plates.
How does a Modular Tactical Vest Work?
By allowing the wearer to choose which modules he or she will use, the system can provide just as much protection as is needed. The system when used with all the modules can weigh a significant amount (up to 35 pounds) but it will protect the major arteries of your neck and groin, your sides and your vulnerable organs in the front and back of your body.
The way in which a combination of hard and soft protection work is this: The hard ceramic plate will shatter as a high velocity round hits it. This process will slow down the bullet enough to be caught by the soft Kevlar protection.
SWAT tactical teams have special needs when it comes time to choose bulletproof vests. They have to be prepared for any kind of situation, such as confronting heavily armed perpetrators, rescue hostages, conduct counter terrorism and enter barricaded facilities. SWAT teams don’t know what type of weapons these criminals or terrorist can have, so going in they’ll only have their vests to protect them.
The modular tactical vest system delivers what SWAT teams need which is mobility and to remain stealthy. The vests are specially designed to distribute their weigh across your shoulders so that the officer is not hinder in movement. SWAT operations have to be highly movable to be deployed in all kinds of situations. The new fabrics that go into making modular tactical vests are specially designed to be as quiet as possible for added stealth.
– Anthony McGrath