How Does An Armored Vest Stop A Bullet? The Modern Science Of Tactical Gear Explained

What are ar500 plates

What is tactical gear and how is it made?

It’s easy to take safety and protection for granted. Even when you build up a good habit to keep yourself safe at work you can overlook why you do it in the first place or how you can improve upon a long-established standard. Tactical gear, body armor clothing and additional supports are all a modern manifestation of a very old need — to reduce the risk of bodily harm and save as many lives as possible. Thanks to the efforts of talented engineers and scientists we are all able to enjoy the benefits of reliable tactical gear.

Learn more about tactical gear, what it’s made out of and how it works below.

The United States sees thousands of deaths every year. Some are caused by drunk driving, while others are caused by medical negligence. A frustrating element involved in many of these cases are how easily they can be avoided with a little extra care. Tactical gear is expressly designed to stave off bullets, turn knives and otherwise reduce the risk of severe bodily harm to the wearer. Armor vests have saved the lives of well over 3,000 law enforcement officers over the past 30 years and can mean the difference between life and death for many.

Body armor not only needs to be tough, it needs to be breathable and easy to wear. This can seem almost contradictory, but the fact of the matter is that many scientists and designers have found a way to have the best of both worlds. Bulletproof body armor is crafted out of a unique material that can absorb high-impact shots even at close range. Armor plates are worn over the chest, stomach and legs to give the wearer the highest possible chance of coming out of a fight unscathed. Since 1978 nearly 90 officers have been saved by body armor in New York City alone.

Many people will wear multiple thin layers of clothing to stay warm compared to just one or two thick layers. This functions by letting heat build and grow throughout each layer, creating a comfortable (and more flexible) outfit for the winter season. Body armor plates and bulletproof vests work very much the same way. These highly advanced layers are made out of unique fibers that reduce the impact little by little, stopping the bullet much quicker than if any single plate had been used. While not infallible, tactical gear has made great strides over the years.

Body armor needs to not just stop knives, fists and bullets, it needs to keep the wearer comfortable. Different tactical gear models are able to withstand incredible temperatures, stave off the cold and reduce the amount of moisture built up over time. These benefits are only continuing to be embraced as time goes by. The Bureau Of Justice Statistics saw over 70% of departments requiring its officers to wear vests at all times. This number is expected to rise alongside the surge of gun crime across the country.

Although any gunshot wound runs the risk of puncturing a vital artery and causing the victim to bleed out, some areas are more prone to complications than others. The chance of dying from a gunshot wound to the torso, for starters, is over three times higher for officers who don’t wear armor vests than those who do. Stomach wounds, due to the high amount of sensitive organs, also have a significant risk rate. Tactical gear is designed to meet any difficulty head-on, either preventing injury outright or buying officers enough time to get the help they need.

Tactical gear today is better than the tactical gear of yesterday. The future could see the make of the tactical plate carrier, and general body armor levels, reaching unprecedented heights.

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