As has been noticed by more than a few attendees, the Shooting Hunting and Outdoor Trade (SHOT) Show has increased its law enforcement, military and tactical firearm and accessory space each and every year. Within those sections, are smaller specialize manufacturers and distributors of less-lethal devices. Whether it sprays a debilitating chemical, fires a small ball containing liquid or powder oleoresin capsicum, is an impact munition launched by a 37 or 40mm launcher, is some form of baton or is a specialty light that interferes with a suspect’s equilibrium, they can all be found at SHOT. Designs for use by the civilian population as well as law enforcement and the military were on display; let’s take a look at the new products available or soon to be released.


Spitfire® Pepper Spray: The Spitfire pepper spray dispenser is small enough to be unobtrusively carried on a ring with your car and house keys and yet instantly ready should a threat present itself.  The thumb actuated dispenser is unlike most oleoresin capsicum sprays in that it is held in the fist and actuated unlike most defense sprays which are held upright like a spray can.  The Spitfire spray contains a 10% solution with a 2 million SHU (Scoville Heat Unit) rating.

New from Spitfire at SHOT is the Hex® a Yawara defense stick unit with integral OC spray.  The Hex is just the right size to protrude from your fist so that it can be used to strike an assailant before or after you spray them with pepper spray.  The unbreakable Hex unit can be reloaded with OC cartridges from Spitfire.


Aegis MK63™ Trident: Aegis Industries LLC is a new company that was started by former Navy SEAL Ken Stethem.  The MK63 Trident is defined by Aegis as a Handheld, Modular, Multi-stimulus Response Device or (HMMRD).  What the MK63 does is incorporate several different less-lethal options in one package.  Looking like a cut off side handle baton the MK63 offers an electronic restraint device, OC pepper spray and impact device combined.  The OC spray fires from the thumb activated handle out to 25 feet according to Aegis.  The electronic restraint device contacts which are used like a traditional stun gun to achieve NMI (Neuromuscular Incapacitation) are on one end as well as an integral 320 Lumen L.E.D. light.  The MK63 is made of durable material and is designed to strike with as well.  A rail system allows optional laser and white lights to be attached.


Safariland® Distracton Devices: Safariland displayed their new Low Roll and Mini Bang distraction devices from their Defense Technology line.  One of the problems with tossing round NFDD (Noise and Flash Distractionary Devices) devices is that they tend to roll away from the breach point and this can result in unintended injuries.  The new Low Roll and Mini Bangs incorporate octagonal sections on the top and bottom of the units to inhibit rolling.  The devices are non-reloadable and are listed at 175 decibels and 8 million candelas.  Both units should hit the market by March of this year.,


Tornado Personal Defence System: The Tornado system incorporates an OC spray unit with a 125 decibel alarm that actuates once the unit is removed from the rotating belt clip.  The pepper spray unit also has a strobe light to blind an assailant while spraying or to prevent the need to spray.  The Tornado can be carried on a neck lanyard, belt clip, arm band, vehicle mount or wall mounted unit for the home.  The Insta-Freeze Spray™ contained within is listed at 2 million Scoville heat units and sprays out to 15 feet according to company representatives.


Brite-Strike® Baton Integrated Light Flexaton: The brainchild of police officer Glenn Bushee the BIL Flexaton combines a high output light (170 lumens) with an expandable thermo plastic baton.  The light can be used in the traditional flashlight mode while allowing an officer to have a less-lethal impact weapon in hand for instant deployment.  With a flick of the wrist the baton expands to a length of 27 inches.  The baton flexes on impact which should dump more kinetic energy on target while the thermo plastic design reduces the potential for injuries.  The switch allows the flashlight to strobe which can be used to disorient a suspect prior to striking with the baton or the officer can light (disorient) then strike.


Mace Pepper Gun: On display from Mace is their Pepper Gun which they describe as the most accurate non-lethal self defense spray available.  The plastic gun type design (reminds me of a single shot flare gun) fires it OC spray out to 25 feet.  The distance is possible because of the double can design which can be replaced in the break top design.  With an integral white light to help get pepper spray accurately on target, the Pepper Gun has been a big seller to civilians.


ALS Technologies Training Spray Can: Training is a vital part of chemical agent usage.  Little to no training can result in little to no product on target in real life but inert training units (water) can be expensive when purchased from the factory.  ALS has come out with a training unit for their larger riot type large (14 oz. and above) canisters.  The training unit can be filled with regular tap water and the pressured up via a compressor like filling a tire.  This training unit would be great for jails and prisons that must train a large staff in realistic confrontation simulation scenarios (better than getting hosed as a role player with water than real pepper product!).


Sabre® Red Blue Face™: No we’re not talking about attending a performance of the Blue Man Group® here in Las Vegas, Blue Face is a new product from Sabre that includes a blue dye in the pepper stream.  The dye stays on the suspect (to make identification easier) for 24 hours.  The OC product is the same high-quality debilitating Oleoresin Capsicum that we’ve grown to love from Sabre (and that suspects have grown to hate).


Lightfield HomeDefender Rubber Slug and Super Star: Lightfield has long manufactured kinetic energy impact munitions in a variety of configurations.  For 2010 the company is now marketing its Rubber Slug and Super Star 12 gauge products to the general public.  The Slug and Super Star (think Koosh ball on steroids) have velocity between 800 to 900 fps.  At close range these munitions can put a hole in an intruder but won’t go through three interior walls and injury a family member like conventional shotgun fodder may.  Are they non-lethal?  No.  Are they less-lethal than conventional ammo?  Yes.


RM Equipment M203PI 40mm Launcher: Many of the state-of-the-art kinetic energy impact munitions are only available in 40mm.  What 40mm offers over standard police riot 37mm launchers is a rifled barrel and increased accuracy.  Since putting the rounds on target whether impact or chemical munitions is what’s it’s all about, a reliable and accurate 40mm launcher is what you need.  RM Equipment manufactures M203 grenade launchers that can be mounted under the standard M16A2 for use in the U.S. military.  They also make stand alone 40mm launchers for police.  On display at this year’s SHOT show was a pistol grip version.  This launcher can be hung around the arm/neck of an operator and give instant access to impact or chemical munitions.  Very small and compact, the RM M203PI can be quickly placed into service versus a full-size launcher.


ASP Agent Baton: ASP (Armament Systems and Procedures Inc.) has come out with a new baton for plainclothes officers, the Agent.  The Agent is a small lightweight baton that comes with a pocket clip.  Designed to be warn in the plainclothes officers inside coat, the baton expands to 16” to provide the detective or agent with an intermediate less lethal option.  The baton also features ASP’s LeverLoc system which is closed without striking against a hard surface like the traditional ASP baton (you just twist as you apply closing pressure).


Zarc International’s OC Ball Launcher System: Zarc International already makes some of the hottest pepper spray products on the market with their Vexor line which contain a Capsaicinoid content level of 1.45%.  New for 2010 is a OC (Oleoresin Capsicum) Ball launcher and liquid OC projectiles containing the same high concentration of Capsicum.  Combining the impact of a gas operated .68 caliber ball with liquid OC should make for an interesting experience for the bad guy or gal.


Sage International’s New Semi-Auto 40mm Launcher: The same people that designed the Double Deuce double barrel 40mm launcher have come up with a box fed four or six shot 40mm semi-auto launcher.  Imagine being able to deploy six impact or chemical munitions rounds on rioters as fast as you can pull the trigger and then being able to immediately insert another magazine.  With a target release date of the fourth quarter of this year, the Sage 40mm semi-auto will be a welcome addition to patrol, tactical and corrections operations.


FNH USA Tiberius T4 Less-lethal Launcher: FNH USA has teamed up with Tiberius to market a less-lethal launcher the T4 which uses FNH’s line of munitions which include: indelible marking paint, washable paint, impact and Pelargonic Acid Vanillylamide (PAVA – which is a synthetic pepper product).  The FNH rounds are finned and are vastly more accurate than traditional round balls.  The T4 is a magazine fed less-lethal launcher that resembles an M4 platform which should decrease training time and allow standard carbine sights and lights to be affixed.


Combined Systems LEDI: When we think of less-lethal, we usually think of electronic restraint device, chemical sprays or sometimes impact munitions.  Combined Systems has developed something quite different with the LEDI.  LEDI is short for Light Emitting Diode Incapacitator.  The LEDI is a non-invasive light that flashes a pulsing changing colored high intensity light at whomever it is aimed at.  The result is disorientation and other effects from a distance with no residual effects.  With an optimum range of 7 to 30 feet the LEDI can be used alone or in combination with other less-lethal technologies to disorient, distract or disburse rowdy suspects.  Think of the benefits of controlling a college bar crowed at closing time when they won’t disburse.  CSI hopes to release LEDI in late 2010.


Mace® Takedown with LED Light: Mace has introduced a new top actuator for their Takedown brand of OC spray products.  The push button actuator includes a built in LED light.  Imagine being able to identify friend from foe and help getting pepper spray accurately on the face of an assailant.  With the proliferation and low cost of LED’s kudos to Mace for adding it to a standard can of their fine product.

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