Body armor is an essential piece of equipment for security guards, providing crucial protection in high-risk situations.
With so many options on the market, it can be difficult to know which type of body armor is best for your needs.
In this blog, we will explore the different types of body armor for security guards as well as provide recommendations for different types of situations and environments.
It's important for security guards to prioritize their safety, and investing in the right body armor can make all the difference in a dangerous situation.
Whether you're a seasoned security professional or just starting out, this guide will help you make an informed decision when it comes to your body armor.
Importance of body armor for security guards
Security guards are called on to provide a wide range of services for a wide range of clients.
Anyone involved in security of any type will emphasize one thing as vital to doing the job properly; preparation.
It is crucial that you are prepared for the situations you will face, and the threats you will come up against. This preparation also includes body armor selection.
As attacks on security guards increase, we’ve seen more security firms begin to implement body armor requirements. Body armor is one of the most effective ways to prevent security guards from being harmed by most attacks.
Factors To Consider When Choosing Body Armor For Security Guards
The security guard profession is a very versatile one. You can be employed to guard property such as a mall or bank, a person, or an item such as money. Additionally, there are security guards who protect political figures, celebrities, or individuals awaiting trial.
Regardless of what they’re protecting, all security guards face potential dangers. Because of the dangers inherent in the job, security guards often wear body armor.
If a criminal is choosing to rob a bank, they may attempt to stab or shoot the security guard that is on duty. The body armor worn must be able to protect against these stab threats as well as rounds from handguns and rifles.
A bank security guard could easily wear a low-vis plate carrier that is discreet enough to not scream tactical, yet able to defeat all the threats they might encounter.
A security guard tasked with mall security may also face dangerous situations. If someone chooses to shoplift or hold up a store, the security guard is likely to be the first on the scene. They need to be sure they are protected from potential stabbing attacks or a concealed handgun.
Recommendations for different types of situations and environment
Soft armor inserts like Level 3A may seem more comfortable, but what are you giving up?
Our Level 3+ hard plate body armor will never roll up like a newspaper and won’t have to adjust our ShotStop® Duritium® plates after an altercation.
On average, a Level 3A soft armor insert weighs around 1.5- 2 lbs and will stop penetration from most handgun-caliber bullets (up to a .44 Mag).
Whereas, our NIJ-Listed Level III+PA plate weighs only 2.7 lbs and will stop at least 6 shots from a 5.56x45mm (M193), 7.62x39mm (AK-47), and a 7.62x51mm 149 grain M80 FMJ.
Is Level 3A Body Armor Multi-Hit?
I understand that level 3A body armor is lighter and thinner than most hard plate armor, but what happens when you get shot in a soft armor plate?
If a plate is NIJ-Listed Level 3A, it can stop multiple strikes from a pistol-caliber bullet.
Even though a soft armor insert can defeat pistol caliber bullets, the backface deformation will cause significant trauma to your ribs or chest.
Can Level 3A Body Armor Keep You in the Fight?
If you’re interested in staying in the fight after being shot in your armor plate, NIJ-Listed Level 3A is not the right choice.
If you’re shot with a 9mm or .38 Special, you have a solid chance of taking a hit and still being able to function afterward.
Higher calibers will most likely have too much of a backface deformation which is likely to break ribs or the sternum.
Even if a Level 3A insert stops a bullet from penetrating, your chances of staying in the fight are slim.
Best Level 3 Body Armor Plate
The most popular Level 3A body armor weighs roughly 1.15 lbs per insert and has an incredibly low profile of less than 0.5”.
As exceptional as this sounds, Level 3A armor can only protect you against handguns.
The ShotStop® Duritium® Level III+PA body armor is only 2.7 lbs per plate and 0.7” thick for the 10” x 12” plate size.
The Duritium® Level III+PA plate may be a hard plate, but it comes in 5 different sizes with 2 armor cuts (SAPI, Shooter).
The versatility of our Level 3 Duritium® plates makes it the perfect body armor for everyone of different sizes and shapes.
The ShotStop Duritium® Level III+PA plate is a stand-alone plate that is NIJ-Listed to prevent penetration and excess BFD for at least 6 shots from rifle-caliber bullets, up to an M80 bullet.
As mass attacks in public spaces continue to rise in the United States, it’s become increasingly important for security guards in any capacity to wear body armor.
As you begin looking to add body armor to your kit, you must prioritize your safety over the price tag and invest in life-saving armor. After all, you cannot put a price tag on human life.
Our mission is protecting the protectors. That's why we’ve gone to great lengths to exceed the minimum requirements of NIJ armor rating levels while keeping the weight down, comfort levels up, and the cost at an affordable price.