Jayfort Security Services Blog
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Body Armour for Security Guards
Body Armour Protection for the Manned Guarding Sector
Manned guarding remains a key service security firms provide. Guards are essential at certain locations – such as construction sites, business & retail parks, industrial estates, etc. – to monitor and protect against unauthorised entry, vandalism, and theft. Not only can trained professionals patrolling a site ensure any situations can be dealt with immediately, they also serve as a deterrent to any potential troublemakers.
While some security workers may experience long shifts with no sign of suspicious activity, others may well expect to encounter aggressive individuals from time to time: thieves and vandals could carry weapons to defend themselves or to cause further destruction (knives, blunt instruments such as crowbars and metal pipes, depending on the value of items on-site).
To stay as safe as possible, security guards manning locations they expect to become targets should wear body armour – but with so many available on today’s market, which is best-suited to possible threats?
Wearing Stab Vests for Resilient Protection
Workers from right across the security industry wear stab vests underneath their uniforms or civilian clothing: these offer reliable protection against blades and sharp objects (such as broken bottles) of different types. These are made with Kevlar, a material woven into tight grids and then arranged into multiple layers: this creates friction against blades, stopping them from tearing through. Stab vests also offer defence against blunt trauma, reducing injury if struck on the torso with an improvised weapon.
Stab vests are tested and rated by the Home Office Scientific Development Branch (CAST), and available in three levels of protection: each level can withstand attacks using specific amounts of energy. Security professionals providing manned guarding services should wear the highest level of stab protection available – this ensures you’re prepared for all eventualities.
Overt or Covert?
Stab vests are available in overt and covert styles to suit different applications. For guards wearing uniforms, they can choose between either – overt vests worn over other layers can become part of the official attire, while covert armour worn underneath allows your outfit to remain unobstructed.
Many covert vests produced today feature breathable materials for temperature-control performance: this helps you to remain cool in warm climates over long periods, ideal for guards working lengthy shifts. As overheating can cause discomfort and prove to be a considerable distraction, these vests are recommended for all security personnel.
Spike protection can also be added to the majority of stab vests. This features an even-tighter weave of Kevlar, with gaps between fibres narrow enough to trap pointed tips found on needles and sharp objects. In some cases, attackers will use hypodermic syringes when confronted by security guards – not only can these cause injury, but also pose a risk of contamination. You should add spike protection to your stab vest if possible – even if you’re never attacked with a needle, at least you can feel reassured should the situation arise. You may also want to wear anti-stab gloves, to protect your hands when trying to restrain armed trespassers.
Fit and Comfort
Finding the right sized vest for your shape is essential: wearing an ill-fitting armour can still leave you exposed to injury. A vest that’s too big may shift from its primary position on your torso, pushing up into your throat or dropping out of place as you move; a vest that’s too small may feel tight and restrictive, denying you the flexibility you need in challenging situations. Make sure you measure your height and chest before ordering armour, and compare your findings with the supplier’s size chart.