22 October 2014

American Dad Part II- Four items everyone needs to carry

Good to see you came back.  Hopefully you have been looking forward to part two.  As you work on the mindset and training with your family, they will need tools.  I know it might be tempting to get Momma that chest rig she has been eyeing for months, or the kids those A-TACS footie pajamas, but lets start simple.  These simple items can be used to teach signaling, self defense, low light tactics, and first aid.  These are the absolute basics that they need to have with them whenever they are outside the house.

Whistle- whether on a hiking trail or in a dark parking garage, you need to ability to draw attention to yourself as fast as possible.  Nobody even looks anymore when they hear a car alarm, but a the sound of a whistle covers quite a distance and attracts lots of attention.  My goto whistle for years has been the Micro Whistle .  It is small, incredibly loud, and comes in several colors.  Especially with the ladies and kids, getting them a color they like will increase the chance of it being carried.  Let the little ones blow it a few times in the house to get it out of there systems.  Then tell them that they are only supposed to use it in case of an emergency and go over some examples.  Kids get it more than you think they do.  This gave my wife piece of mind when my son got too old to go into the ladies room with her.

Pen- The most fundamental improvised defensive weapon.  For more information about use just apply the same tactics discussed in Project Pencil.  As discussed in Project Pencil, any pen or pencil will do.  I would base how much money I spend on how prone the person is to loosing things.  My favorite inexpensive option is the Zebra F-701 Stainless Steel pen.  It is super tough and writes well.  If you are looking for something of quality that will still not break the bank I would take a look at ProMag Defense Pen .  It is one of my favorites but still inexpensive enough not to have a nervous breakdown if you loose it.  Maybe this would be a good option for you.....the training officer.

Flashlight- Obviously for signaling and all around illumination, many flashlights work well as improvised impact weapons.  Just use the same manual of arms as with the pen or pencil.  Once again you can spend lots of money here, and might do so on yourself.  When my daughter and niece started college a year apart I upgraded both of their lights to the Streamlight Stylus Pro Black .  Super bright and inexpensive batteries, not to mention a pocket clip so it can be carried in the same positions as the pen.  After checking out several AA lights over the past two years I settled on the Olight T25, which is now the Olight ST25 .  This is a light that the wife and kids can have in their bag to back up their Streamlight Stylus.  It is an excellent light with excellent features.  Don't be like some tactical Dad's out there whose family is carrying a cheap light or no light at all while they are carrying a $300 torch that they can heat food with.

Bandana- last and but certainly not least.  I carry an blaze orange bandana behind my wallet at all times.  The primary purpose, besides signaling, is to apply direct pressure to a wound.  Even though it is not ideal, it along with the pen or flashlight can be used to make and improvised tourniquet.  This was why I started carrying it as a young officer.  Just make sure that the one you carry is 100% cotton or it will not absorb anything, much less blood.  I also like to use it as a mental "trigger" when I put it in my pocket to remind myself that bad things happen and I am prepared to deal with them.

Consider picking up a copy of The Gift of Fear and having everyone read it.

With Christmas right around the corner, get them some stocking stuffers they can use or that may just end up saving their life.

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