Often undervalued by desk jockeys counting beans at the department HQ, a good pair of gloves can be a street cop’s best friend.
Quality gloves can protect law enforcement patrol and SWAT officers from abrasions, cuts, needle sticks and bites. Gloves are a kind of body armor for the hands.
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Like any other tool, there is not a single pair of gloves that is perfect for every occasion. Many cops have a general-use pair, another pair for winter duty and a third for high-risk searches. Officers on a SWAT team will frequently have special needs such as fire resistance. Here is a look at some of the best choices in tactical gloves on the market today.
5.11 Screen Ops Patrol Gloves
Many departments provide officers with touchscreen computers and tablets for essential job functions. The 5.11 Screen Ops Patrol Gloves work with touchscreens but also provide officers with “second skin” when patting down suspects. Soft and snug, officers can readily manipulate firearms while wearing these gloves.
For more information, visit 511tactical.com or call 866-451-1726.
BlackHawk CRG2 Cut-Resistant Patrol Gloves
When dealing with the dangers of razor blades, broken glass and other cutting hazards associated with pat-downs and drug searches, the BlackHawk CRG2 Cut-Resistant Patrol Gloves can provide a layer of protection.
For more information, visit blackhawk.com or call 800-379-1732.
Condor Tactician Tactile Gloves
The Tactician Tactile Gloves from Condor Outdoor Products combines a goatskin leather palm with TouchTec nanotechnology to give an officer good protection and ample dexterity with the ability to use touchscreen tools. Available in black, tan and MultiCam.
For more information, visit condoroutdoor.com or call 800-552-2554.
Damascus Patrol Guard
The Patrol Guard gloves from Damascus Protective Gear feature synthetic leather palms and the company’s Razornet Ultra liner to protect the officer’s hands. The Razornet Ultra liner is very resistant to cuts and has an anti-microbial treatment to help prevent the gloves from picking up an odor after months of use.
For more information, visit damascusgear.com or call 800-451-4167.
Hatch TWG-100 Patrolman
Hatch offers a duty glove that uses a soft sheepskin leather for the palm and a nylon spandex for the back of the hand and sides of the fingers. TheseTWG-100 Patrolman gloves have a CoolMax liner to wick away sweat from the hand. The thumb and index fingers of the gloves also have a conductive material to allow for the operation of touchscreen devices.
For more information, visit hatch-corp.com or call 800-347-1200.
Hex Armor Search & Duty 4045
Needle sticks are a very real danger for law enforcement officers when conducting searches when drugs are involved. The Hex Armor General Search & Duty 4045 Gloves will help protect against them. The material built into the fingertips can literally bend needles. The palm of the glove is cut and puncture resistant.
For more information, visit hexarmor.com or call 877-668-3675.
HWI Gear CTS100
The CTS100 from HWI Gear combines the ability to use a touchscreen device with cut-resistant Kevlar in the palm. HWI uses a flexible, synthetic material on the back of the gloves that allows for a very good fit and feel.
For more information, visit hwigear.com or call 805-646-3879.
Mechanix Original 0.5mm Covert
For general-purpose patrol gloves that are good for weapon manipulation, it is hard to beat the Original 0.5mm Covert from Mechanix Wear. The gloves have a snug-fitting elastic cuff, use anti-bunching construction and are made of TrekDry, a material that allows for good airflow. These gloves are machine washable.
For more information, visit mechanix.com or call 800-222-4296.
Oakley SI Lightweight
Light and breathable, Oakley’s SI Lightweight gloves offer superior comfort to officers working in hotter climates. The fingers have a special surface pattern to enhance grip, and the suede palms are perforated for increased airflow. These gloves are available in black, coyote and foliage green colors.
For more information, visit oakley.com or call 800-403-7449.
Outdoor Research Coldshot
Officers needing a cold weather glove are too often stuck with bulky choices that severely limit their ability to use handcuffs and weapons. The Coldshot gloves from Outdoor Research offer improved dexterity and feel while still providing insulation. The gloves are also water resistant and have a neoprene cuff to help keep warmth in and the elements out.
For more information, visit outdoorresearch.com or call 855-967-8197.
Ringers Gloves R-21 Tactical
Ringers Gloves offers exceptional protection to the hand with the R-21 Tactical gloves. The R-21 uses 6mm-thick padding on the top of the hand, knuckles and fingers to reduce potential injuries. The padding is segmented to allow for better dexterity.
For more information, visit ringersgloves.com or call 800-421-8584.
Patrol Incident Gear FDT Alpha
Designed for superior sensitivity and dexterity, the Full Dexterity Tactical (FDT) Alpha Gloves from Patrol Incident Gear (PIG) offer increased hand protection while allowing a good shooting grip. The trigger finger uses a very thin synthetic leather for maximum sensitivity.
For more information, visit patrolincidentgear.com.
A general duty glove, the Tacprogear Grip offers excellent dexterity and sensitivity. The fingertips are tacky for a better grip, and there is padding over the palm and knuckles for increased protection. A hook-and-loop closure at the wrist helps keep debris out of the glove during strenuous activity.
For more, visit tacprogear.com or call 561-865-7279.
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