by: Hannah Zetti, Ozarks First
TCAD Paramedics have taken an extra safety precaution by investing in bulletproof vests for all personnel.
Paramedics are often the first to arrive at the scene of an emergency, many times before the location is secured and safe. In recent years, assaults on first responders have increased across the US, and while no firearms have been pulled on TCAD medics, the bullet proof vests are a proactive measure that required a lot of planning.
“Ballistic gear is not something you can go into your local discount store to purchase, as well as its not a one size fits all,” explained public information officer Lt. Johnathan Tudor. “There’s all types of ballistic gear, with all types of protection levels. We wanted to find out what would be the best for us.”
After reviewing incidents from across the country, TCAD chose to invest in the vests. Paramedics were sized for the new gear, and armor was designed for best fit, comfort and protection. The idea was first discussed over two years ago, and this investment required time for research, budgeting and fittings.
TCAD Paramedics have developed a list of dangerous situations, based on existing calls, that will alert paramedics to scenes were they need to wear the body armor– although many paramedics wear the vests throughout the shift.
TCAD wants the public to know this upgrade to personnel safety is not because of any specific threat. The company invested in this additional layer to be prepared if there ever comes a day it is needed.