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View Poll Results: What Precautions Have You Taken?

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  • Bullet Resistant Vest

    3 60.00%
  • Stab Resistant Vest

    1 20.00%
  • Other

    0 0%
  • None

    1 20.00%
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Thread: Explorer Safety

  1. #1
    EDSLocklear is offline Junior Member EDSLocklear is on a distinguished road
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    Explorer Safety

    I recently joined the Explorers Program (I am getting my uniform in January) and was wondering if anyone ever really thought about their safety. I live in a town where the hottest crime seems to be bike theft, but it DOES get pretty bad sometimes. So what I want to know is, what precautions have you taken? I am investing in a Stab Resistant Vest (can be upgraded to a Level IIIA Bullet Resistant Vest). So far, there has been no danger, and I don't necessarily fear for my life (though I AM extremely paranoid), but I think everyone should invest in some sort of protection. Just a thought.


    Anyways, have fun out there, and remember, stay safe!

  2. #2
    Burnout1985 is offline Junior Member Burnout1985 is infamous around these parts Burnout1985 is infamous around these parts Burnout1985 is infamous around these parts Burnout1985 is infamous around these parts Burnout1985 is infamous around these parts Burnout1985 is infamous around these parts Burnout1985 is infamous around these parts Burnout1985 is infamous around these parts Burnout1985 is infamous around these parts Burnout1985 is infamous around these parts Burnout1985 is infamous around these parts
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    i'd suggest getting a bulletproof vest, i dropped 400$ on one to wear under my uniform as no matter what the crime level in your area it only takes that one gun to destroy someone's future forever. Can't put a price tag on your life man.

  3. #3
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  4. #4
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    Hi,
    Wear what you are issued. Stay close to the officer you are working with, this is why you do not work independently.

    If you notice a problem, use your radio to summon a sworn and properly equipped officer to deal with the problem. You are the department's extra eyes and ears, not its arms.

    Body armor is ridiculously expensive, so I would truly hope that, unless you have paid employment providing for its expense, that you did not seriously invest in personally-provided body armor. If you did, I'd like to be your friend so that I could borrow money sometimes.
    USAF-AD | NREMT | Indiana: More Pro-Gun Than Texas

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Burnout1985 View Post
    i'd suggest getting a bulletproof vest, i dropped 400$ on one to wear under my uniform as no matter what the crime level in your area it only takes that one gun to destroy someone's future forever. Can't put a price tag on your life man.
    Sorry, but this gave me a chuckle. let's go to the logic:
    Your explorer post/department didn't buy you a $400 vest.
    You bought a vest for $400 because you can't put a price tag on your life and it's worth more than $400.
    Therefore, the explorer post/department price tag for your life must be less than $400. Budget guy: "You want $400 vests for each explorer member!!?! They're not worth it. They can buy their own if they think their price tag is more than that."

    Oh, and if you can't put a price on it, the vest under your shirt isn't going to stop a rifle round. It's not going to stop the pistol round used in the Ft. Hood shooting. You can spend even mor emoney and get better gear if you can't put a price on it.

    I would think a better solution would be no body armor and lobby the post to get uniforms and equipment that doesn't look like police. Wearing a similar uniform as police and also having the distinct outline and profile of a person wearing body armor is like drawing a big target on your back. I would think business casual khaki pants with polo shirt and no insignia, no duty belt and mo radio clipped on it would be much safer than any body armor.
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  6. #6
    Burnout1985 is offline Junior Member Burnout1985 is infamous around these parts Burnout1985 is infamous around these parts Burnout1985 is infamous around these parts Burnout1985 is infamous around these parts Burnout1985 is infamous around these parts Burnout1985 is infamous around these parts Burnout1985 is infamous around these parts Burnout1985 is infamous around these parts Burnout1985 is infamous around these parts Burnout1985 is infamous around these parts Burnout1985 is infamous around these parts
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    well generally we are not getting shot at by rifles or handguns with military grade ammunition in them so i think i will stick to my vest, i don't get why you would try to say " Hey! even though you are riding around with police and walking into dangerous situations with them, i think you should just not bother wearing a vest as people might not mistake you for a cop, or there is a chance you'll get shot by a firearm that the vest won't stop!". Also, why would i lobby my post to place RESTRICTIONS on what i want to be able to wear and do and have access to while on ride alongs? that cuts down on the whole purpose of a ride along in general. Oh and to be a complete smartass, the vest CAN stop a rifle round if you buy a level IV ballistic plate insert for the front and back of the vest.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Burnout1985 View Post
    " Hey! even though you are riding around with police and walking into dangerous situations with them, i think you should just not bother wearing a vest as people might not mistake you for a cop, or there is a chance you'll get shot by a firearm that the vest won't stop!".
    Because IMO, your chance of getting shot gets magnified by what you wear more than ballistic vests will protect you. Ever see an off-duty officer wear their vest? And they know they WILL intervene in a violent felony and yet still they don't wear it because it says "shoot me first, I'm a cop" even if there is no evidence of a firearm or a badge.

    BDU's, a duty belt, a shirt with dept logo and body armor is, IMO, a liabilty to your safety, not an asset. Plenty of people go on ride-alongs including police recruit new-hires waiting for an academy class. Look like them. It doesn't limit what the officer allows you to do and I would hope you wearing ballistic vests doesn't change that.

    There is a good place for explorers to wear a ballistic vest and that is the shooting range. If you are allowed to use the range as part of exploring, wear your vest there. It's a good place to train with it too.

    Also, why would i lobby my post to place RESTRICTIONS on what i want to be able to wear and do and have access to while on ride alongs? that cuts down on the whole purpose of a ride along in general.
    What gear do you use on a ride along that you need to carry with you and is influenced by your attire?
    Last edited by MikeG; 01-12-12 at 01:13 PM. Reason: add place for vest

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Burnout1985 View Post
    Oh and to be a complete smartass, the vest CAN stop a rifle round if you buy a level IV ballistic plate insert for the front and back of the vest.
    When is the last time you saw a regular beat cop wearing the style of carrier\vest that has IV plates in back? Stop being a smartass, you're not going to impress anyone here.

    Quote Originally Posted by Burnout1985 View Post
    Also, why would i lobby my post to place RESTRICTIONS on what i want to be able to wear and do and have access to while on ride alongs?
    To make it less likely that someone will mistake you or another explorer as sworn personnel.

    Quote Originally Posted by Burnout1985 View Post
    that cuts down on the whole purpose of a ride along in general.
    I thought the purpose was to learn about a police officer's job. You don't need a pretend uniform and gadgets you'll never use to do that.

    Now, I don't have a problem with people wearing vests on ride-alongs. A police uniform (on the officer) and the police car can be bullet magnets, although the chances of that happening are so slim that it's really not necessary in many environments a ride-along will be in. Officers have to run towards gunfire, explorers do not- big difference. Nevertheless, my agency has a bunch of second-hand vests passed down from officers who have new ones, and they're better than nothing- if a little smelly. But not being all dressed up in a faux police uniform is even better, as Mike G said.

  9. #9
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    trainzmainiac is offline Police Dispatcher trainzmainiac is on a distinguished road
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    Ok, this debate just continues to occur again and again. I think this topic has been discussed enough, and there is no reason for explorers and LEO's to continue the debate. In my oppinion, if your departments explorer uniform, which is decided upon by LEO's, not explorers, is similar to the police uniform or if your post advisor (an LEO) has you wear a duty belt on a ride along, then you should wear a vest. It also depends on how your ride alongs work, such as what types of calls can you get out on and such. All in all most of the argument presented in this thread is about uniforms and gear, whic I would like to point out out is decided upon by LEO's, not explorers. Therefor telling the explorers they shouldnt wear that is pointless because they dont decide. Now in cases where explorers cram ad much gear on their belt as possible or wear vests or other clothing just to "look like a cop" or to "make people listen to them" then yes it is inappropriate.

    Now to the explorers, intentionally being a smart *** and disrespecting LEO's is inappropriate and reflects badly on the program.

    Now please, keep this on topic and constructive. Im tired of the explorer vs LEO flame wars that always occur.

    Thanks!
    Last edited by trainzmainiac; 01-12-12 at 06:24 PM.
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  10. #10
    Burnout1985 is offline Junior Member Burnout1985 is infamous around these parts Burnout1985 is infamous around these parts Burnout1985 is infamous around these parts Burnout1985 is infamous around these parts Burnout1985 is infamous around these parts Burnout1985 is infamous around these parts Burnout1985 is infamous around these parts Burnout1985 is infamous around these parts Burnout1985 is infamous around these parts Burnout1985 is infamous around these parts Burnout1985 is infamous around these parts
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    i don't try and look like a cop, i actually minimalize what i have on my duty belt, just the police radio, glove pouch and flashlight and that's it. No handcuffs or anything else, i wear the vest cause when i ride with officers and we get to stuff like shots fired calls or a burglary in progress they take me with them, as they want to be somewhere they know where i am, instead of leaving me alone in the cruiser with really no protection. And yea, sorry for being a smartass, i'll refrain from being a **** in the future as best as i can. No offense to you all but we will all have different opinions on it, our uniforms in my Post look very similar to the upper echelon such as LTs and above here as well so i routinely am mistakenly called an officer and treated like one when i don't intend to be. (i have even had people from other departments stay away from me on calls for a good part of the time until they get closer and realize i'm not brass) Tranz you hit my point on the head, it depends on what situations you'll encounter and what the officers have you do as well as your uniform ( our officers have us with them on every single call and i actually am required to participate and assist in things like taking statements and etc by the officer i'm with when there are not enough personnel.

  11. #11
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    I would not fault an explorer for staying within the policies and procedures established by 'the management'.

    I think that someone who is less gung-ho about wearing semi-official clothing will impress employees more, however. The less important the trappings are to someone, the more comfortable I am around them.

    We don't have explorers where I work, only ride-alongs. We don't bring them to calls of shots fired, or other very dangerous calls. If a department does, I think vests should be provided. Like I said, used ones are better than nothing, and you can't expect students to shell out hundreds of dollars for something like that.

  12. #12
    Burnout1985 is offline Junior Member Burnout1985 is infamous around these parts Burnout1985 is infamous around these parts Burnout1985 is infamous around these parts Burnout1985 is infamous around these parts Burnout1985 is infamous around these parts Burnout1985 is infamous around these parts Burnout1985 is infamous around these parts Burnout1985 is infamous around these parts Burnout1985 is infamous around these parts Burnout1985 is infamous around these parts Burnout1985 is infamous around these parts
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    well i think the uniform doesn't make the officer, the officer makes the uniform if you know what i mean. I personally don't care about the uniform too much, i care about being active with the department and doing the ride alongs, writing tickets and reports for officers and etc.

  13. #13
    mcsap is offline Veteran member ( retired) mcsap has a reputation beyond repute mcsap has a reputation beyond repute mcsap has a reputation beyond repute mcsap has a reputation beyond repute mcsap has a reputation beyond repute mcsap has a reputation beyond repute mcsap has a reputation beyond repute mcsap has a reputation beyond repute mcsap has a reputation beyond repute mcsap has a reputation beyond repute mcsap has a reputation beyond repute
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    Quote Originally Posted by Burnout1985 View Post
    well generally we are not getting shot at by rifles or handguns with military grade ammunition in them so i think i will stick to my vest, i don't get why you would try to say " Hey! even though you are riding around with police and walking into dangerous situations with them, i think you should just not bother wearing a vest as people might not mistake you for a cop, or there is a chance you'll get shot by a firearm that the vest won't stop!". Also, why would i lobby my post to place RESTRICTIONS on what i want to be able to wear and do and have access to while on ride alongs? that cuts down on the whole purpose of a ride along in general. Oh and to be a complete smartass, the vest CAN stop a rifle round if you buy a level IV ballistic plate insert for the front and back of the vest.
    Go ahead and buy a Level IV vest and wear it for 8 hours on a summer day ( or any day). Explorers NEED a vest like I NEED a Ferrari. Ridealongs with me were not allowed to get out on a hot call. If you are that concerned about your safety that sitting in a cruiser is dangerous , than stay at home.

    Your uniform should be so different from the actual officer that someone thinks " why is a UPS guy riding with the cops ?"

    You should only carry a MINIMAL amount of equipment. MINIMAL.

    I was an explorer for about 3 years and did ride alongs. I also rode along as a college intern. Lastly , I was a Police Officer for over 25 years and had many ride alongs.
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  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by mcsap View Post
    Go ahead and buy a Level IV vest and wear it for 8 hours on a summer day ( or any day). Explorers NEED a vest like I NEED a Ferrari. Ridealongs with me were not allowed to get out on a hot call. If you are that concerned about your safety that sitting in a cruiser is dangerous , than stay at home.

    Your uniform should be so different from the actual officer that someone thinks " why is a UPS guy riding with the cops ?"

    You should only carry a MINIMAL amount of equipment. MINIMAL.

    I was an explorer for about 3 years and did ride alongs. I also rode along as a college intern. Lastly , I was a Police Officer for over 25 years and had many ride alongs.
    I could not see how this could be said better!


    FWIW, ET109, we are issued and wear level IVs, but we don't do patrol.
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  15. #15
    Burnout1985 is offline Junior Member Burnout1985 is infamous around these parts Burnout1985 is infamous around these parts Burnout1985 is infamous around these parts Burnout1985 is infamous around these parts Burnout1985 is infamous around these parts Burnout1985 is infamous around these parts Burnout1985 is infamous around these parts Burnout1985 is infamous around these parts Burnout1985 is infamous around these parts Burnout1985 is infamous around these parts Burnout1985 is infamous around these parts
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    lol we went from a nice change of pace back to angry again very quickly. And like i said, our uniforms are similar to the higher ups enough for others to mistake us for an officer, and since we follow the officer in on "hot" calls i figured i might as well not be stupid and wear some protection. Minimal equipment for me is the police radio, glove pouch and flashlight. No more and no less. And even law enforcement seems to disagree on explorers wearing vests, my parents (combined over 38 years of law enforcement experience in the state i live in and across the US) both demanded i get one and helped me pay for it. As a side note, most of the officers refused to take me out with them till i even got one except for a few of the midnight shift guys.

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