Friday, 1 March 2013

Law Enforcement Equipment

UK Law Enforcement equipment is a bit different to what is commonly used by our cousins across the pond but most law re-enforcement equipment is developed in the US for the US market and then adapted for UK law enforcement.

The most common difference between American and UK Law Enforcement Equipment is the adaptation for firearms.   Very few British law enforcement officers carry a fire arm, or even a Taser currently (though Taser use is being ramped up) and as such the need for pistol holsters or magazine holders is dramatically diminished.  Most manufacturers of law enforcement equipment however if not actually american themselves, have aimed their products at the much larger American market, so the likes of 5.11, Blackhawk, Vertex, Arcteryx etc have all designed their pants or police vests to accommodate hand guns and ammunition.  Two notable exceptions would be UK based Arktis and Op. Zulu who have a more geo-targeted with their equipment design and manufacture, producing vests specifically to hold UK Law enforcement equipment like PAVA or CAPTA defence spray, extendible batons, cuffs Airwaves Radio system with KlickFast Dock and then another couple of pockets for your pocket note book, sandwiches, etc.

Another key difference in law enforcement equipment needs is the design of tactical trousers (pants) .  Yet again the US market is saturated with trousers built for holsters and to hold spare magazines and pocket knives, but no UK law enforcement personnel carry pocket knives as standard and only a very small percentage carry pistol magazines and even those that do are issued with specific magazine pouches rather than cutting their own detail as if an accident were to occur whilst the magazine is stuffed in a pocket rather than in an officially issued pouch with secure retention etc.

Other than the fire arms issue  a lot of law enforcement equipment has to serve many of the same specifications, needing to be hard wearing, abrasion resistant, stain resistant, water resistant and /or fast drying, if not water proof, re enforced in the major wear points, suitably cut to allow minimise restriction of movement when running, or climbing, or transitioning from any number of positions and reliable enough to function for years in a variety of conditions.

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