Three Things You May Not Know About a Bulletproof Vest

There are many people today, who for a variety of reasons, have the need to wear a bullet proof vest. Also known as concealable body armor, this type of protection from gunshots has saved many lives, but there are several misunderstandings about what it is and what it can do. The following are three things you need to know before you start wearing a vest.

They’re not bullet proof
Although known in the vernacular as bulletproof vests, manufactures avoid using this term because they are not technically bullet proof. Although they offer great protection relative to not having any protection at all, it is still possible to be shot while wearing a bullet protective vest and be seriously injured or killed. These protective vests are made from special fabric materials and are constructed in such a way to make penetration difficult, but as the velocity of the bullet increases, the chances of it making its way through the vest and into your body increases.

How armored vests are rated
Because body armor cannot absolutely protect a person from being harmed, manufacturers take the time to test and rate these vests. Known as the V-50 rating, it is the industry standard for bullet resistance. The letter V stands for velocity, and the number 50 indicates 50 percent. Because the chances of a bullet penetrating a vest go up as the velocity of the bullet increases, companies conduct ballistics tests on a vest at a certain starting velocity, and then they begin to increase the velocity. When a velocity is reached that creates a condition that results in 50 percent of the bullets penetrating the vest, this becomes the V-50 rating.

Body armor has a limited lifespan
There is no way of knowing exactly how long a vest will last, and of course, the person wearing one does not want to find out the hard way that it needed to be replaced. A vest that is no longer effective may not lead to death, but it can offer less protection than it should have, and this can lead to injury. It is for this reason that the body armor industry has developed the five year standard. Regardless of how good of condition a vest may appear to be in, it should be replaced after five years.

The above information is only a few of the important things you need to know about body armor. You should educate yourself more, and read everything provided by the manufacturer about your particular vest before wearing it.

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