Ballistic and Stab Protection Awareness for Security Staff in the UK
Given the diversity of the security industry, security personnel face various challenges and Stab Protection Awareness is essential. The dangers each job presents will vary based on factors, such as location, the type of people you may encounter, the value or profile of the person, or property you are protecting and the time of day or night. Whatever the circumstances, you need to stay safe. Many people across the security industry wear body armour to stay as possible on-duty.
Finding the Best Armour for your Role
Stab Protection Awareness
Body armour is designed to defend the wearer’s vital organs. There are 3 types of protection: ballistic, edged blade, and spike. In each category, multiple levels are available, as tested and rated by either the United States’ National Institute of Justice or the UK’s Home Office Scientific Development Branch which is now called CAST. The level you need depends on the possible dangers you may face (based on risk assessments and previous incidents).
We asked the body armour experts at safeguardclothing.co.uk and they said in 2014 the stab vest was the most common choice of protection in the UK. These are thin and lightweight enough to be worn underneath your clothing. Stab vests are made with a tight Kevlar weave to create friction against blades and stop them penetrating. There are 3 levels of protection, offering defence against different levels of attack. As a rule, you should wear the highest level, as you never know how ferocious an attack may be.
Spike protection is made with an even-tighter weave, to stop items with pointed tips (such as needles, or sharpened objects) slipping between the fibres. These are most beneficial in areas with high levels of drug-related crime, as security personnel are at risk from potential stab-wounds from hypodermic needles.
For most security personnel, guns are unlikely to pose much threat. However, security guards working in, for example, high-value jewellery or electronic stores, certain venues, cash-in-transit teams or patrolling certain business or industrial estates should be prepared. Ballistic armour is available with 5 levels of protection, designed to stop most bullets types. You’re unlikely to need those at a high level – a level IIIA should provide adequate protection, stopping the majority of handgun bullets.
All armour is available to be worn under and over clothing. Covert vests are more lightweight, with breathable fabrics for comfort; overt vests are heavier. Ballistic armour features Kevlar to stop bullets on impact, absorbing and redistributing their energy. Those vests at the higher levels of protection also feature ballistic plates (made of steel or ceramics) to stop high-velocity rifle ammunition.
For security guards working with dogs ensuring they have protection as well is a must. Various types of dog-armour are available today, including ballistic and stab protection: these share similar design-processes as human armour, but help your four-legged colleagues remain safe.