I'm a new member in a fairly new SRT team. The question for those of you on SWAT or similar team is. What useful items do you like to carry with you or have found helpful? Items like glow sticks, para cord, wedges and spare batteries. I already carry the usual stuff like spare mags for primary and secondary weapons, gas mask,flex cuffs, flash bang,radio and trama kit. Any good ideas would be appreciated .Thanks
Yes I am new but have reading the forum for years.
Depends on your AO. Urban, or suburban...how close would you be to your gear if on a call-out? Hitting a meth lab in the middle of nowhere? Obviously the more isolated your jurisdiction, the more I'd carry with me.
I work in the suburbs so the best camoflage for me would be chain-link fence and discolored white aluminum siding. I could get back to my extra gear in the truck unless the S has REALLY HTF.
I carry 4 mags for long gun (either M4 or MP5), three mags for handgun, 14" 870 less lethal across back (5 rounds bean bag), gas mask, large fixed blade knife, pair of reg cuffs, couple flex cuffs, OC spray, asp, distraction device (flash bang), extra pull-pin for distraction device, diagonal cuters (for quick-cuffs), 3-4 glow stix, pad and pen/pencil, two small flashlights, three door stops, fat black magic marker, medical pack (with basic essentials to stop bleeding), length of para cord, couple candy bars, gum, couple small knives (in my pocket and pocket on vest), water/hydration pack (of course), safety glasses, several baby wipes in doubled zip-lock bags, pack of kleenex in zip-lock (might be outside in rain/snow for extended period)...
One thing you might want to do is to sit back and think about what are most of your call outs consisted of, then go from there.
One thing I always carry is a mulitool. Little bastards are oh so useful!
The one thing you don't want to do is try to carry every item ever made for SWAT.
Another useful item is a small mirror on a telescopic arms. Not like the 300 dolar ones that are made just for "SWAT" BS but the cheapo 20 dollar mechanic's mirror you get at Autozone.
Extra batteries for your primary light source are great to have in a pinch as well as the lickey chewys (candy).
You will find in the beginning you are trying to carry everything under the sun because you "never know' what might happen. As time passes and you get more experienced your gear will thin out to the basic necessities.
Good job on getting on the team. I loved every second of mine.
Good call on the mirror....its in a pocket, but forgot to list it. Many places on the current entry long gun to carry extra batteries...which is what I do....vltor stock, MIAD grip, hollow grip...etc.
Other than weapons and mags, this is what's in the vest
3 Yds Duct tape looped around a flat piece of hard plastic
6 extra 3V batteries for weapons light
1 extra Aimpoint battery
flex cuffs ( looped into vest webbing )
flex cuff cutter
tiny led light ( for navigational use out of immediate danger zone )
Leupold type lens cleaning pen ( brush/felt combo ) to clean optics and NV
various size plastic wire ties
Surefire 6P ( can be strapped to fore end of weapon with duct tape if weapons light goes down )
spare Surefire P60 bulb
Excedrin and Ibuprofen ( 6 to 10 ea in small ziplock ) or whatever works for you
Additional items are in the vehicle and set up in tiers. Items are loaded into pouches and then into a backpack and shoulder carried battle bag like the Diamondback Tactical bailout bag. Depending on the type of mission, the pack can be downloaded to reduce weight . I travel as light as I can, and the below listed items are added as the situation dictates. If a critical incident arises, you may doing vehicle operations or assigned to a post on a roof or wooded area where a bag with the listed items would come in handy. I don't worry about guys teasing me about s---. I have been in the business for 17 years now and when you have been in some bad situations in this big Metropolitan area I live and work, you tend to prepare better for the future.
night vision PVS14
laser range finder ( if you carry a long distance weapon/optic )
spare batteries ( and bulbs ) for weaponslights, night vision
spare cel phone, hand held radio batteries
additional medical supplies
additional flex cuffs
additional Surefire light
small repair kit ( M16/MP5 springs, firing pin, firing pin retaining pins ect. )
spare M4/M16 bolt
water bottles and food items ( like granola bars ect )
LED flashlight ( for navigation illumination where high brightness is not critical but long battery life is )
signal tools ( like smoke and mirror for emergency signalling in isolated outside area missions )
roll of electrical tape
industrial grade garbage bag ( for multiple possible uses )
antiseptic hand wipes
linemans pliers ( for cutting wire or fence )
For those of you on entry teams what do you carry in your first aid/trauma kits. I know a lot of guys on my team carry the standard blood clot, bandages, and tampons. I am just curious as to know what the rest of you prefer.
skip the tampons and carry super absorbent maxi's.
I was on SRT for a while, my background was FMF Corpsman (Navy Combat Medic) assigned to Marine Corps. I got to see a lot of action and learn what really works.
Porno. You know, for when you have to stay up all night on an OP.
I'd stay away from the tampons too. I've heard some have an anti-coagulant ingredient, which would be bad for trauma care. Don't leave this to the TEMS, this is one area you want to be prepared.
The best doorkicker-type IFAK is simple:
Standard USGI compression dressing
Rubber gloves - Not just for hygiene, the rubber gloves can help seal a sucking chest better than your bare hand.
Self applied tourniquet
Some EMS shears
YOUR BLOOD TYPE in a visible location
and that's it....It'll easily fit in a small utility pouch. I keep mine in a esstac 4X4
For long ops
small 3x5 notebook with a pen
But try to keep it simple
(edited because I forgot the shears)
You are going to have to make a complete list of items that are a necessity and items that aren't for your specific task. I'm seeing some lists that lead me to believe that some guys are carrying ruck sacks instead of their tactical vests. Don't get me wrong, the lists contain some much needed supplies but I would think that carrying that stuff on your vest for, possibly, hours would get very heavy and cumbersome. The idea is to go as light as possible without failing to take the needed items. I am a gear nut but I only take what I feel will be needed for that particular op. If I am called out for a barricaded subject then I can assume that I may be out there for 1 hour or 8 hours. In that case you need to consider hydration (a Camebak or Black Hawk is highly recommended) and some type of power bar. You also need to keep in mind you might possibly be on your knees for hours before you get rotated out for a break. Knee pads also come highly recommended. I once spent about 5 hours inside of a college on hard marble floors without pads. NEVER AGAIN! I will give you a fairly complete list. I dont carry all of these items all of the time.
Vest: on my vest I have my Camelbak Pak teen, utility pouch for spare Surefire batteries, bulb, and other misc items. 3 mag pouches for 6 30 rd mags (.223), radio pouch, pouch for Surefire M2, distraction device pouch, flex cuffs, back-up folding knife. I keep it fairly light!!!
Please keep in mind that my vest configuration will change just slightly because I am going
with a whole new vest (Paraclete). The only thing that I see different will be the addition of
5 Glock mags on the vest and probably losing the mag pouch on my thigh scabbard.
Thigh rig: Safariland 6004 holster for Glock / Surefire X200B
Opposite thigh rig: double mag pouch for Glock, OC spray
- when needed I can switch out my opposite thigh rig for a separate thigh scabbard
which has a Safariland Taser holster and pouches.
Knee pads: (Alta work the best). I have not had the need for elbow pads yet.
Gloves: I use Ringer gauntlet style tactical gloves. These work great! Very thin but still
allow full feel of the trigger and firearm. Flash proof to 800 degrees!
Boots: Oakley SI boots work very good. They are the most comfortable boot I've ever worn!
My only complaint, and its the only one, is that the boot does not have any steel or carbon
shank. I recently served a warrant on a meth house and stepped on a large nail. It
went straight through the bottom of my boot. I still love them though.
Balclava mask: good for using on narcotics raids to keep the shit bags from knowing who you
are. They also offer flash protection.
I do not carry medical supplies because my team has two TEMS (Tactical EMT's). But if I were on a team that does not have a TEM then I would carry the very essential medical gear. Quick Clot, gauze, and other bandages. The mirror was another really good item that was mentioned. Go to your local car parts store and get one. The list could go on and on (bug spray with DEET, sunblock, goggles, etc...) I hope this helps. If I think of something else I will add it later.
Policetacteam, I think you may be referring to my post about the rucksack . Not knocking your post,
( it's all good information sharing ) just clarifying. If you read my post, the items carried on the tac vest will fit into one standard size general purpose pouch. The additional items are carried in the trunk in a 3 day size pack and various bags as described and are only pulled out and carried if the mission dictates. If the team members get called to support dignitary protection, the gear can me easily taken in one pack and placed into the Dig Protection SUV or CAT vehicle. The items listed that are carried in the trunk would do no good if responding to a critical incident and they were sitting in the SWAT locker at the station, or in the SWAT van. All our team members carry a small blowout kit that fits into a small GP pouch which includes basics to stop bleeding in a gunshot injury. It is common for SWAT to be called to follow K-9 into large open areas or wooded areas tracking armed subjects. If a team member gets shot, they may bleed out before the medics can get to them. I wish we could have 2 medics on every mission but that would be a luxury for us. We have to call EMS to be on standby if we have notice of the mission, warrant ect. Also if we have multiple officers ( uniformed or SWAT ) go down ( as in an active shooter incident ect. ) the team member can stop the bleeding till medics get there. An Israeli bandage is light and compact and a team member can use it to render aid to himself or another till medics get there. I agree with you 100% on travelling light. I just like having all the tools nearby ( in the trunk ) to handle whatever may arise.
One thing I haven't seen mentioned here - put a pair of rubber overboots in your gear bag. In a lot of buildings if the fire alarm goes off that means sprinklers, and that means 4" of water on the floor.
While it's not something you might use every day, have your department pick up a box of Tyvex coveralls. Handy if you have to serve a warrant on a garbage house.
I totally agree. I know that there are some guys that read these posts and take things literally. I have also been to tactical schools where I have seen guys carry everything including the kitchen sink. These are, more than likely, the guys who rarely get called out and haven't quite dialed their gear list in yet. Our procedure is very similar to what you mentioned. Take care.
One last thing that has come up in regard to medical kit
Juggernaut, I would advise that you carry a gunshot trauma kit on you....even if you have tac medics. Only having the tac medics carry all the medical kit for the whole team is like having one or two guys carry all the extra magazines for the whole team, IMO. The obvious dilemma is if the tac medics are trying to start an airway on a wounded teammate or some other critical injury, an extremity wound on another officer can become critical by not having basic kit to stop the bleeding.
There's plenty of stories in recent years where guys have been wounded, pinned down and seperated from the team with the shooting still going on.
Once you've been on the job for a while, if decide not to carry med kit, that's an educated decision that you feel is right for you. But JUGGERNAUT since you said you're new to this, I would strongly advise you carry the extra 14 oz. or so, of GST kit. It might save your life or one of your teammates.
Good luck man.
Great posts here, it's interesting to read the different philosophies about things...
So what's the word on the maxi pads?
Good, bad, there's better stuff out there at near the same price, specific brands to find/avoid?
This is a quick add-on,
After speaking with our TEMS I was advised that they are strongly recommended not to use Qwik Clot because it is very difficult for ER docs to clean-up. For those of you not familiar with this product it works like this: Qwik Clot controls moderate to severe blood loss by promoting coagulation. As far as I know, Qwik clot is a powder and is poured directly onto the wound. I have read accounts of soldiers with entire arms and legs dismembered and have lived because of this product. I'm not sure if its application would be entirely needed in a SWAT medics kit but I think if I were in the middle of no where and were bleeding profusely I would rather piss off some ER doc with a messy Qwik Clot wound than die from massive blood loss. Just my 2 cents
I like a handfull of tuffties as opposed to the flex cuffs.
I carry an ASP and ASP mirror.
I always have a Gerber multi-tool - it gets used for countless things.
I like Oakleys M frames w/ clear lenses better than any of the five brands of goggles I've tried (they all for up much faster that the oakley sunglasses).
I keep my bali, gloves, and some other things on a back GP pouch so when I grab my vest I have them. I keep items on my vest to a minimum (mags, one bang, a GP pouch for small items). I still carry steel cuffs and pistol mags on my belt cause that's where I carry them the rest of the time.
I do have one nomex flight suit for labs, but those have declined so much the last 2 years I hardly use it.
I keep a very small LED light handy on my belt for navigation.
Com is a never-ending battle (I keep changing my mind on what type mic/switch system I like, and where I want my radio - plus they just replaced our radios so all of our stuff doesn't fit anymore).
Most of what we do is search warrant stuff, so light and fast are the way to go. Our van has lots of other stuff in it for barricaded stuff - everything you can imagine. But on that stuff, I'm usually lying behind a rifle.
That is very good information that all should read. Quik Clot heats up as part of the chemical process that causes the clotting and can cause severe burns. As Policetacteam says above, it should only be used on life threatening injuries to extremeties where direct pressure and/or tourniquet will not work or are impractical. We carry it in the blowout kit, but to be used only in such extreme circumstances.