Are You Ready for Duty?
WEAR YOUR VEST
Since 1987, over 3,100 officers have been saved by wearing their vests.
- The IACP calls on all agencies to develop mandatory vest wear policies.
- Age does not always determine if a vest needs to be replaced. Vests should be inspected yearly for wear and damage.
- PROPER VEST FIT – Of the 101 officers killed between 1990 & 1999 from gunshot wounds to the upper torso, 40% were killed when the round entered between vest panels or through the arm openings.
- Make sure your vest fits properly before each shift. If your weight or height changes significantly, consider getting fitted for a new vest. PHYSICAL READINESS – Offenders who assaulted or killed officers typically sized them up to determine if they could “take them.” Offenders were more reluctant if an officer looked fit and acted professionally.
- Officers who are overweight are more likely to sustain serious injuries and miss more work days.
- Adults should get 150 minutes of moderate intensity aerobic activity per week and work all major muscle groups 2 or more days per week.
- MENTAL READINESS – 4 out of 8 officers involved in on-the-job accidents and injuries were impaired because of fatigue.
- A 2012 study discovered a link between the daily stressors of police work and obesity, suicide, sleeplessness and cancer.
- Off-duty stressors such as family, financial, or health issues can intensify on-the-job stressors. Ensure that lines of communications are open between you and your supervisors concerning any on- or off-duty stressors that might jeopardize safety. OFF-DUTY VIGILANCE – Between 2008 & 2012, 27 officers were killed while off-duty but acting in an official capacity.
- You are known as an officer in your community even when you are not on the clock. Ensure the safety of you and your family by remaining alert even during everyday events. SITUATIONAL AWARENESS – Between 2001 & 2012, 21% of officer deaths were classified as ambushes by the FBI.
- No stop or call is ever routine. Remain vigilant at all times to avoid a potentially life-threatening encounter. Mix-up your on-duty routine. Consistently parking in the same locations or eating at the same time or place can leave you vulnerable. KNOW YOUR COMMUNITY – Approximately 1 in 4 assailants have some sort of prior relationship with the officer in the incident.
- Be cognizant of crime trends occurring in your community. Be familiar with the demographics of the community you serve. Develop relationships with local community organizations in order to establish rapport and trust.
For more information and for source material please visit http://www.theiacp.org/fitforduty
Download the pdf file here