Personal Protective Equipment

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Personal Protective Equipment

personal protective gear what is difference between them in optimal usage? Explain the scenarios and when ideally to use them. Is it correct to give women and kids such protective gear? What is the difference in using this between men women, & kids? What does the law allow regarding this issue? Is it legal?

Since the dawn of time, mankind have always sought the use of tools in order to improve its strength and power. Every country has laws governing the use of such tools. Unfortunately, what is perceived like danger and what is a real threat are two very different things, consequently similarly different will be the tools deemed necessary to guarantee the personal safety according to the law and according to a singular person. Talking about protective gear, it's possible to find an almost endless list of items but we can narrow it down to the following categories:

 Pepper spays - marker;  tasers;  stun guns;  telescopic stick – kubotan – key chain tools;  Alarm – light.


Pepper Spray

Defense sprays are studied to incapacitate an assailant via irritant or inflammatory effect. They usually rely on an extract of hot pepper plants, called Oleoresin Capsicum (OC), for their effectiveness. It is an inflammatory agent that has an instantaneous effect when sprayed into the eyes and face of an assailant.

Why it is good

The heat from pepper extracts is measured in Scoville Heat Units. The typical jalapeno pepper rates at about 2,500 Scoville Heat Units, while the some commercially available sprays rate at up to 2 million Scoville Heat Units. Range of these sprays is usually 2 or 3 meters and the effects take 20-30 minutes to wear off with no long-term ill effects to the assailant. Pepper sprays come in an incredible variety of choices, either in shape, size and purpose according to the users, be them runners, students, zombie hunters ecce cc

Basically, defense sprays are available in gel\stream based or spray/fog. Gel is a popular format as it sticks, can be rubbed into the eyes post delivery, doesn't accidentally hurt the user and it's safer to use indoor.

On the negative side

 two or three meters is not a very large distance. Any attacker coming already will likely close that distance, because of the momentum, despite being sprayed and, once within reach, is likely to cause some damage. It is possible to escape unharmed, but it is also quite possible to be severely injured. On the other hand, if the assault occurs at very close range, it is possible to be unable to spray the assailant without getting hit by the spray oneself. The effect on an assailant is somewhat dependent on the assailant. Some folks have a natural resistance to defense sprays. Some people are on drugs which don't allow them to register pain fast enough or severely enough to change their vector. The legality of defense sprays is regulated at a state level and any country has specific rules. Like any weapon, a defense spray can be turned against the original user. One should treat this like any other weapon and commit to training and practicing drawing and using it.


Another kind of spray is the Marker spay.

Marker spray has no O.C. in it, instead of capsaicin it contains highly visible ink. When sprayed directly into the face, the liquid may startle the attacker and temporarily disrupts the attack. The pros are that the dye hits the attackers face with force and could likely cause the attackers eyes to close. The spay will mark the attacker with a dye that is usually also a UV marking dye and once notified could help the police identify the suspect. On the down side, this kind of spray has no incapacitating effect whatsoever. The user must escape immediately, run to a safe place and call the police.

Here some of the available types:


Stun Guns

A stun gun is a device that relies on a pulsed electrical current to incapacitate an assailant. They are highly effective at stopping an assailant in their tracks, and the loud crackling noise that they make when you hit the "on" switch can be very intimidating to a would be attacker. Stun guns are particularly effective when intervening with an attacker whose back is turned to you ( when intervening on behalf of someone else who has the attention of an assailant).


Stun guns do require an actual physical contact with the assailant. It must be brought into contact with the assailant's body to exert its effect. It is a very up-front and personal kind of confrontation and leaves the user very little time to draw and implement the weapon. Should be hold in hand already from a reaction standpoint, though this may make the assailants aware of the device.

For this purpose precisely many producers sell stun guns disguised as cellphones. . . On the down side... Thick clothing can lessen the effect of the stun gun on an assailant; like any weapon, a stun gun can be turned against you. You should treat this like any other weapon and commit to training and practicing drawing and using it.


Tasers Tasers are essentially stun guns that work by firing a barbed dart (the stunning element) into the assailant's skin from a distance. The dart is attached to the handheld unit by two wires that deliver the electrical impulses that disable the assailant. Most tasers have a three meters range and come in two designs: The first design is like an electric razor (some people also refer to it as the Star Trek "phaser" design). This design costs less and is probably easier to aim for the ones who have never fired a pistol. If you have ever used a remote control to change the channels on your TV, you can probably aim this type of taser.

The second taser design resembles a pistol, and operates in much the same manner, but is equivalent to the standard taser in all other respects. Opposite to a stun gun, a taser allows its owner to keep a certain distance from the assailant BUT they require to hit your target...hitting a target from a remote distance is not a piece of cake. Hitting a moving target is extremely difficult. In addition, tasers only fire one single shot and require skin break to accomplish their goal. If the assailant is wearing thicker clothing or is moving in a way that prevents the barb from entering the skin, the taser will not work.


Kubotans ("Pocket sticks")

What is the Kubotan: A kubotan is a handheld device you typically connect to a keychain. It is effectively a baseball bat in a format easier for carrying. The Kubotan is an aluminum or hard plastic cylinder of about 14 cm, with a keyring on its end, it is used for self-defense in case of aggression. In a short time and with a few instinctive movements can be used to hit and bring pressures on sensitive parts of the human body. It is therefore a useful tool that can be easily used.


The object finds its origins in the Indies, around the year 1000 and later in China and feudal Japan (15001600). The traveling Buddhist monks, in the Indies, led him as a means of defense. This object was called VAJRA which means "diamond" or "Indra Lightning" (goddess). In the mid sixties in the USA, a Karate and personal defense expert born in Japan in 1934, Me Kubota Tak, created the Gosoku-ryu style. He taught close combat in American bases in Japan and continued in the USA after the Vietnam War, at the FBI and the California Police. He created the key door "Kubotan" (in the late 70's); A plastic cylinder fitted with a ring at one end where you can apply the keys. He developed employment techniques at the US Police. At the same time she taught the California Police to use the TONFA (an object currently in use in various police departments around the world). Nowadays, kubotan is used everywhere in the world. Two major categories of teaching can be differentiated: the first, the US one, more linked to the martial arts derived from the development of Master Kubota. The second, the European one, prefers the vigilance techniques of an individual, who are largely employed in police.

however: Using a kubotan means engaging in close-quarters combat. There is no room for error. If unsuccessful, it will likely result in severe injury or death. As for any weapon, the effectiveness of the kubotan is highly correlated to the number of hours of training taken with it.


Collapsible baton

Easier than a regular baton to carry, a collapsible baton can be one of the best weapons around for personal protection, that's why it is mostly use by law enforcers. It is however illegal to carry in many countries. One of the reasons why they are so popular is because they give you a little bit of distance, they hit hard and are effective at stopping an attacker in a dangerous situation. Expandable baton, as an impact tool, can be used to strike, jab and block and to aid arm locks; they also come in handy and can be employed to break windows or break the safety glass surrounding fire extinguisher enclosures. A Collapsible baton, (as well as a fixed baton, a club or a stick) is defined as an offensive weapon because it is “made or adapted for use to causing injury to the person, or intended by the person having it with him for such use". So, although a baton could be a very useful weapon in self defence (or exactly because of its effectiveness), 'being scared of getting mugged' is not regarded as a reasonable excuse to carry it.

Self - defence key chain tool

Less conspicuous but still quite effective are a great number of keychain tools like brass knuckles but disguised as harmless decorative objects. Be it made of steel or hard plastic, those keychain tools are shaped with very sharp pointed ears which can cause injure to any attacker. In many of them, the eyes are actually holes for the fingers to better grip this self-defense weapon. They are usually sold as “ideal self-defense keychain for girl” while several “Self-defense experts” claim those to be effective tool against an attack simply by placing your fingers through the holes and delivering devastating punches to the assailant. What usually is not taken to account is the brutality of a fight. Non-lethal weapons can be one way to protect oneself but it's important to have a full understanding of the pros and cons of the tools at disposal. In a situation where one needs to fight back, a good selfdefense weapon can come in handy. However, carrying a self-defense weapon, whether it be a gun, knife, taser, or any other option, is only one aspect of defending oneself from an attacker, and the truth is, your self-defense weapon is completely useless if you aren’t prepared to use it. Giving a woman or a child any self defense weapon and take it for granted that this will make them safe and unassailable, is an irresponsible act. Not only any weapon requires training and the acquisition of the skills necessary to use it, but could also instill a false sense of security, putting in second place awareness and prevention, both HUGE parts of avoiding an aggression.


Alarms and light

Last articles on the list are not weapon but tools sold to draw attention and\or scare off an attacker. In this category we can place alarms and lights. When used effectively, the tactical flashlight is a good tool for self defense. It's difficult to imagine how effective an extremely bright light can be, until you're shined with one in the dark and many can be as bright as 500 lumen. Not only is the flashlight a great self defense tool, but you can carry it everywhere, including where weapons of any kind are illegal to carry. If a flashlight were to drop out of your pocket or bag in a public area, it wouldn’t raise an eyebrow.

The same can be said for the acoustic alarm; a 110 decibel alarm, audible up to 100 meters, calls for attention and might scare off attackers. The alarm can sound up to one hour continuously with the same intensity. Attachable to bags, key chains, purse etc for an easy access, many models are activated simply by pulling out the key chain itself. Both light and alarm can be useful means of prevention and deterrence, allowing a person to flee the scene simultaneously drawing the attention.


Anti-theft pocket security system

Sold as a revolution in personal security, Ayuto is a device that is used for: -sending an SOS when one is in danger; -getting a private security operator to verify the request by a “silent hearing”; -being a GPS location; -if needed, having a law enforce patrol car or any kind of help sent asap. Contrary to the alarm and to the light, this device doesn't draw attention on the victim, on the contrary its main goal is to alert a private security firm without the aggressor being alerted. Thanks to the innovative multi-operator SIM, Ayuto connects to the mobile operator that has the best signal, ensuring the maximum coverage possible.


...According to the law (in Italy)

According to the italian law, there are two types of weapon: proper and improper. With the term “proper weapon” are described all the weapons the primary use of which is to do harm. Under this category are all compressed air weapons, firearms of any kind (including their cartridges), jet weapons (spears, catapults, shuriken, etc.), cutting or punching weapons (swords, sharp knives on both sides of the blade or snap-open, daggers, stilts...), bacteriological or chemical weapons, all incendiary, explosive or disruptive devices. Under the article 4 of the law n. 110 of april 18th 1975 fall all kinds of baton, kubotan or sharp key chains like the ones before described.

An improper weapon is an instrument able to offend, but which, unlike a "common weapon" or "proper weapon", doing harm is not its typical purpose.

Fall into the category of improper weapons various objects like stick, pipes, chains, bolts, metal spheres, hammers,unless there is a “justified reason”. With regard to the "justified reason", whoever carries one of these objects, if stopped by police officers, must provide a convincing reason (for example, to show that he is going to do a job, or that the object is needed for a profession.) There is therefore the inversion of the burden of proof; the onus is on the defendant and there is no "presumption of innocence".

As for pepper spray, the government improved the previous law and, in may 2011 was approved a circular defining the "technical characteristics of self-defense instruments that nebulize a natural active substance based on Oleoresin Capsicum and which do not have the ability to commit offense to the person", as provided for in Article 3, paragraph 32 Law n. 94/2009. The regulation, which came into force on 9 January 2012, lists the requirements that products must at present respect for, to be freely sold and brought. All devices that do not comply with the directions listed in subsection 1 of the decree are subject to firearms legislation.

"In terms of use, this is in any case a tool that can be used for self defense. In fact, much has been argued about the contradictory nature of recognizing as self-defense instruments as long as they are devoid of detrimental capacity since such a feature would obviously be of no use, so the interpretation that has been given to this requirement is to A "minimal capacity".

Stun gun-Taser


In Italy is not possible to legally use, produce or carry a shocker gun or a Taser.

Amnesty International has denounced the deaths of hundreds of people because of this weapon, asking governments to suspend its use or at least limit it to situations of actual threat. 'Does Taser use make legitimate defense applicable?' According to some attorneys, a "Legitimate defense, as long as it is proportionate and aimed at contesting and opposing an immediate danger, is an exemplary and as such able to exclude criminal liability." In fact "It is not punishable anyone who has acted when in need to defend oneself or others from immediate danger or unjust offense, provided that the defense is proportionate to the offense".

Amnesty International has denounced the deaths of hundreds of people because of this weapon, asking governments to suspend its use or at least limit it to situations of actual threat. 'Does Taser use make legitimate defense applicable?' According to some attorneys, a "Legitimate defense, as long as it is proportionate and aimed at contesting and opposing an immediate danger, is an exemplary and as such able to exclude criminal liability." In fact "It is not punishable anyone who has acted when in need to defend oneself or others from immediate danger or unjust offense, provided that the defense is proportionate to the offense". So this is the paradox: given the rightful circumstances, it is possible to use anything in other to defend themselves or others from a real and immediate danger, but at the same time one should explain and justify the possession of a taser or a shock gun, not allowed by the law. Carrying a Weapon without license is punished with the arrest for eighteen months up to three years.

The same thing applies to any "dual use item" or weapon, from kitchen knives to screwdrivers, from scissors to hammers. As said before, a person in danger is allowed to use anything and everything in order to protect itself, but than has to give a rightful explanation for its possession. Obviously, using the article in the course of their trade or profession', is the main reasonable excuse, whether being scared of getting mugged or "just in case" is not. The only type of potentially offensive weapon that is exempted is the small folding 'Swiss army' type knife.


Weapons in the hands of an unskilled user are likely to get him/her hurt badly and the only effective weapon that can guarantee the best defense is providing people a welltrained brain.

Being able to defend oneself is a right for everyone


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