Friday, 24 May 2013

Handcuff Keys

Police Handcuff keys are pretty homogenous in design and function as they must conform to the basic standard of being able to open issue handcuffs.  There are few fancy handcuff keys out there that come with an LED light, a built in window punch or additional novelty features but the primary function of any handcuff keys remains the same, be able to lock, unlock, and double lock standard cuffs (double locking is the process of locking the handcuffs in such a fashion as they will not close any further onto the detainee to prevent injury).

Most forces issue a tiny little silver handcuff key to new recruits when they first join up, however it rapidly becomes apparent that it is next to useless for any practical application being too fiddly to manipulate if the suspect is struggling or you are wearing gloves (winter or slash resistant!) so most officers upgrade their handcuff key pretty sharpish!

There are a few gucci handcuff key brands out there, like ASP who do theirs embossed with the company logo in gold etc. but the standard for the UK market is the Zak Tool (or ZT colloquially) range of handcuff keys.  The most popular model is the shortened round swivel handcuff key which at 6.5cm long is the ideal size for most police officers being large enough to handle easily whilst still compact enough not to be a cumbersome inconvenience. ZT also offer a number of other handcuff keys, the standard slightly longer key, a light weight (but slightly fragile) carbon fibre  key, the covert pocket clip key, the extra easy to use flat knurled swivel key and a key with spring loaded window punch.  The handcuff key with the spring loaded window punch is very handy in what it allows you to do - break a car window, quickly, easily and with relative safety however this feature means the key cannot double lock handcuffs.

Streamlight do a small cuff key with an LED light built in which allows you to illuminate the handcuff key hole whilst trying to get your key in.  There are two variants  one with a right light and one with a red light.  The key with the white light provides brighter, clearer illumination of the handcuffs, but it will also diminish your night vision and be much more visible to others if you are trying to maintain a low profile or covert status.  The red light version does not provide such a bright or clear illumination but doesn't not have such a negative effect on your night vision and is less eye catching than white light at night.

Friday, 17 May 2013

Law Enforcement Equipment

There are many important factors that people in law enforcement need to consider when joining, one of the most important factors is what equipment you need and how much you want to spend on the products that could make a big difference to your performance. The most important aspect when purchasing law enforcement equipment is the quality of the product, realistically the amount you spend reflects on the specifications of the law enforcement equipment you buy.

One very important piece of gear is the footwear; boots are an incredibly vital element to working in Law enforcement as they are worn every hour of every shift. Footwear needs to be comfortable, sturdy and very light for law enforcement personnel as they need to be easy to run in and last under pressure and for long periods of time. Boots such as the YDS goliath are a great example for a hard wearing, waterproof, lightweight boot that will last for years even after everyday usage. Other good boots for law enforcement are lowa recon paras, magnum cobras, bates gx-8 and op systems climate 6.

Kit bags are also very important to carry around all your other law enforcement equipment and tactical clothes. Bags such as the 5.11 Police Bag or the op zulu duty kit police bag are perfect for carrying large amounts and keeping different items in. There are also brands that design backpacks with water hydration packs included; this is very useful for soldiers who have been stationed in a tough, hot and unforgiving environment.

Clothing such as trousers and shirts are priority equipment for law enforcement groups. Most will want you to wear smart clothing such as navy, black or white shirts with black smart but tactical and long lasting trousers. A top brand for this is 5.11 as they fit nicely to suit a professional look and they are durable as well as breathable.

Torches are an important bit of law enforcement kit for any officer, they are used for much different reasons and an officer should have one or two with him at all times. The uses of torches vary, you can use them for signalling, seeing in dark areas and at night. Special light torches can also discover evidence not seen by just the human eye. If you are an officer of the law and you do not have a torch you might want to get on as soon as possible. 

Thursday, 2 May 2013

Army Boots

There are various types of Army boots available on today’s market, whether it’s a certain type of military footwear you are after or a particular brand, there is enough choice of military shoes to suit all needs regardless of budget.

Lowa offer a great range of military boots, mainly in black and sturdy good quality materials they are a perfect choice for anyone after military shoes. They all are lace up military boots as is the case with most military footwear, with the exception of 5.11, who have also steered clear of the common black military boots and currently have a desert colour boot, which in comparison to the Ops system desert colour boot, is a cheaper option of military footwear. Another strong contender for army boots are YDS, providing waterproof boots for the military and non waterproof military boots, all at various price ranges the army footwear offered are varied. Adidas have also ventured in to the military footwear market with a smaller variety of military shoes to some of the lead contenders in the market at medium price. One of the more expensive army boots on the market today is from Danner – with a more classic look which is almost stereotypical of boots for the military compared to the previous military boots mentioned.

Army footwear on the whole has improved dramatically in appearance and perhaps have a more casual look to some of them previously, a fine example of this is Meindl’s army boots, they have a rugged chunky look, but still obvious they are military shoes. Of course all of the army boots mentioned above are not the only military footwear on the market today, GS have also taken part in the contest of producing military boots with a fairly hefty price tag and a very casual appearance of the military shoes mentioned. Last but not least of the boots for the army is UnderArmour’s entry, again at a fairly hefty price, and a casual appearance they offer a lightweight trainer in comparison to the other army shoes mentioned, but with plenty of features they lead the way on the style front for army boots.