Category Archives: Fire & EMS

Galls is “The Authority” when it comes to public safety equipment and apparel including firefighter gear and emergency medical supplies. This section of our Blog in dedicated to you and your professions – Fire and EMS. We hope to offer interesting current news and product spotlights to entertain and inform you of the trends and offers that impact your professions.

Gear & Apparel for an Active Lifestyle

Those with a particularly active lifestyle are always on the lookout for gear and apparel that support their activities. It’s not just about going for a jog, it’s about incorporating fitness, athleticism, and a general sense of activity into your life as a whole. Fortunately for you there are a wide variety of brands that design their products to best suit the demands of active lifestyles. Of course, these products are not limited to those in peak physical condition, but for those who desire comfort and support for any sort of general activity throughout the day. Continue reading Gear & Apparel for an Active Lifestyle

Do’s and Don’ts of U.S. Flag Usage

Do’s of U.S. Flag Usage

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  • Do hoist the flag quickly, and lower it gently and solemnly.
  • Do salute the flag as it is raised and lowered, and continue saluting until the flag is unfastened from the halyard.
  • Do make sure that the union is at the peak of the staff when displaying the flag from a window or building; the exception to this rule is if the flag is at half-staff.
  • Do make sure that the flag takes top position when displaying it with another flag, such as a state flag, from the same flagpole. The exception to this rule is if the second flag is a church pennant, which may then take precedence only during a chapel service that is presided over by a Naval chaplain on a ship at sea.
  • Do position the flag to its own right when displaying it with other pennants on separate flagpoles of the same height and in a straight line.
  • Do make sure that the American flag is always larger than any other pennants that are also displayed with it.
  • Do hang the flag in a vertical position — with the union facing northwards or eastwards — when displaying the flag over a street. However, if the pennant hangs over a sidewalk, the union should be farthest from the building.
  • Do clean and repair as needed.
  • Do fold the flag as carefully as possible — and in a solemn manner — when preparing it for storage.

Don’ts of U.S. Flag Usage

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  • Do not fly the flag upside down, except as a distress signal; this is the one and only exception.
  • Do not allow the flag to touch the ground.
  • Do not fly the flag outside of the sunrise-to-sunset timeframe. However, if flag is left on display during the nighttime hours, be sure to illuminate it.
  • Do not hoist any flag before the American flag, nor lower any flag afterwards.

Show your respect for Old Glory with a patriotic pin.

3 Ways Public Safety Servants are Like the American Flag

The colors of the flag in our nation’s Great Seal were ascribed particular meanings by the secretary of the Continental Congress. What these colors represent is so strikingly similar to our public safety servants that it’s rather difficult to differentiate between the two.

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  1. Red stands for hardiness and valor, and who portrays these characteristics more than our public safety servants? No one. Like the flag that ever waves — regardless of the battle fire that blazes around it, threatening to singe and destroy the flag at its seams — so the public safety servant stands tall and strong. And not just tall and strong, but relentless — relentless in spirit, grit and courage. The kind of relentlessness that drives a person to save a stranger from a burning building; the kind of relentlessness that drives a person to put himself in unspeakable danger in his pursuit to wipe drugs off the streets and out of the schools; the kind of relentlessness that drives a person to give his life on foreign soil for the freedom of a nation not his own.
  2. White stands for purity and innocence. When the flag is hoisted, we are reminded of a nation that was birthed from the simple hope that citizens could form their own government, free from the oppression of tyranny. To live and breathe and work in a democracy guarded and protected from corruption, where the wellbeing and rights of the innocent are defended and protected. When we see our public safety servants rushing to rescue those whose rights are being violated, we see the deepest form of human purity and innocence in action: the selfless disregard of one’s own interests for the good of another.
  3. Blue stands for vigilance, perseverance and justice. For more than two centuries the flag has persevered through warfare, terroristic attacks and natural disasters. For longer than that, our public safety servants have persevered through the worst conditions imaginable to keep our nation and her citizens safe.

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What drives a man or woman to sacrifice without hesitation? Where does the unflagging devotion to service, honor and justice come from? Only a public safety servant could answer these questions. Regardless of the answers, we are thankful that you do what you do. Like the U.S. Flag, you cease not to give us hope, preserve our freedom and keep us safe.

2015 World Police & Fire Games

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Galls is proud to sponsor such a worthy challenge — a challenge that gives the true heroes of our day the chance to not only showcase their athletic excellence, but also the opportunity to demonstrate their national pride. That is one of the reasons why we want to honor you by partnering with the World Police & Fire Games.

These games allow sworn public safety professionals — such as law enforcement officers, firefighters, first responders, and customs and corrections officers — the prospect of competing at an Olympic-worthy level. In fact, this international sporting event is even larger than the London 2012 Olympics, with more than 12,000 athletes from 70 countries. Participants are grouped by country, providing them with an unforgettable opportunity to display patriotism and loyalty to their homeland. Although many of these athletes come from different parts of the world, they come together for a mutual goal: to prove their athletic excellence in more than 60 sporting events, giving them a chance to qualify for more than 1,600 medal events. There is no shortage of events either, with the Games covering the gamut from angling to wrestling.

However, we would be remiss if we failed to mention a part of the Games that transcends athletic ability and backgrounds, and it’s the inherent camaraderie factor. Participants are in a unique position to network with likeminded athletes who have committed their lives to the same purpose: the safety and wellbeing of others. These athletes share a common thread that binds them, regardless of their chosen field or discipline — and the chance to share techniques and stories is a valuable by-product of the Games’ success.

The particular event we are sponsoring is the Toughest Competitor Alive, from June 27th to June 30th, which is an athletic challenge consisting of eight disciplines: 5K Cross Country Run, Shot Put, 100 Meter Dash, 100 Yard Swim, 20’ Rope Climb, Bench Press, Pull-ups, Obstacle Course. As the Proud Toughest Competitor Alive Sport Host, we are eager to be a part of this respected competition. The Games are made a reality by the support of sponsors from around the globe. For us here at Galls, partnering with the Games is our way of saying thanks to you for laying your life on the line every day to protect us.

Did you know?
The World Police & Fire Games Federation, a nonprofit organization run by the California Police Athletic Federation, established the World Police & Fire Games. The first games were held in San Jose, California in 1985, to give public safety officers the occasion to contend in prestigious venues at a global level. Today, the World Police & Fire Games is an international sporting event. Held biennially, the World Police & Fire Games will take place in Fairfax, Virginia, USA, from June 26th to July 5th, 2015. Upcoming Games will be hosted by Montreal, Canada in 2017 and Chengdu, China in 2019 and will also span a 10-day range.

The games continue to grow, with both the attendance and number of participating countries steadily increasing. In fact, the Games have begun to draw as many as 10,000 entrants and a staggering 15,000 to 30,000 visitors. The international community eagerly bids for the rights and opportunity to host this dynamic event.

The Six Levels of Tactical Body Armor

It’s a well known fact that body armor can save your life; that’s why knowing which tactical body armor you should purchase is a crucial decision. Before you start comparing prices it’s important to be informed about the varying levels of body armor available. There are six levels, with level one offering the least amount of protection and the most at the sixth level. It is imperative to know which level is suited to your specific job, as you don’t need over protection nor can you afford under protection. It’s not as easy as simply choosing the armor that offers the highest amount of protection, as each level also increases in weight and bulk. Below is a breakdown of each level and what they offer protection against, as well as a few suggestions for body armor.

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Level I

Level I vests protects against .22 caliber pistol rounds or long rifle rounds, and .380 caliber rounds. Level I body armor is notably light, but that comes at the cost of greater protection. This is the minimum level of protection every officer should have, and the armor should be routinely worn at all times while on duty. Level I body armor was introduced during the mid-1970s. However, most agencies today have opted for a higher level of protection due to increased threat levels.

Level IIA

This level protects against all lower levels as well as 9mm rounds and .357 magnum rounds. Level IIA body armor is well suited for full-time use by police departments, particularly those seeking protection from lower velocity ammunition.

Level II

Protects against the same types of rounds that Level IIA protects against, except the added safety at this level increases the speed at which that ammunition can be fired while still protecting the wearer. Level II body armor is typically heavier and more bulky than either Level I or IIA.

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Level IIIA

Level IIIA provides protection against most handgun threats, as well as the Level I, II-A, and II threats. Level IIIA body armor provides the highest level of protection available from concealable body armor and is appropriate for routine wear in many situations. However, users located in hot or humid climates may need to evaluate the use of Level IIIA armor carefully, as the added weight and bulk may impede with the wearer’s duties.

Level III

Level III body armor is the first vest that mandates the use of heavy, bulky hard plate with softer body armor to protect the wearer from rifle rounds. The soft armor is able to absorb some trauma and minimize injury to the wearer. This armor protects against 7.62mm full metal jacketed ammunition, as well as everything protected from the lower levels. Level III body armor is mostly intended only for tactical situations when the threat warrants such protection, such as barricade confrontations involving sporting rifles.

Level IV

Similar to Level III, Level IV body armor is a hard body armor designed to protect the wearer from “armor piercing” bullets. It also provides at least single-hit protection against the Level I through III threats. Level IV body armor provides the highest level of protection currently available. Because this armor is intended to resist “armor piercing” bullets, it often uses ceramic materials. Such materials are brittle in nature and may provide only single-shot protection, since the ceramic tends to break apart when struck. Just like Level III armor, Level IV armor is clearly intended only for tactical situations when the threat warrants such protection.

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With the knowledge of the various levels you can now choose the right piece of equipment to suit your needs. Here are some examples of a few top selling vests from Galls.com:

Galls SE Series IIIA Body Armor

Point Blank Alpha Elite AXIIIA Ballistic Vest with Hi-Lite Carrier

GH Body Armor Pro Vest Level IIIA

Below are a few videos suggesting the best way to properly fit a ballistic vest, as well as how to measure sizing for both men and women.

Proper Fit:

Sizing for Women:

Sizing for Men:

Six Ways to Make Mother’s Day Memories Without Breaking the Bank

Time and appreciation — that’s how we show mothers that we cherish them. Suffice it to say, there is no need to stress over the perfect gift for Mother’s Day, when time and appreciation are what counts the most. In fact, Anna Jarvis, who campaigned for the creation of Mother’s Day in 1908, dedicated her final years trying to remove the designated day from the calendar. She disliked the commercialization that had developed over the holiday, which continues to this day:

Mother’s Day occupies the No. 1 spot for dining out, consistently beating the other major holidays, according to the National Restaurant Association; No.2 for fresh flower bouquet or plant purchases, surpassed solely by Christmas, says the U.S. Flower Industry; and No. 3 for greeting cards, with 133 million purchased annually — only Christmas and Valentine’s Day rank higher, according to the Greeting Card Association.

Although Jarvis’ latter efforts to combat commercialization failed, we can still honor the spirit of the holiday that first motivated Jarvis: Recognize the mothers in our lives by setting aside a day just for them. When we honor moms from our hearts, we give them more than a calendar day in the year — we give them a memory for years to come. Here are six ways to honor Mom:

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  1. Just a Phone Call Away. According to an international study by Reuters, Mother’s Day holds the No. 1 spot for the highest phone call traffic across the globe. There’s nothing quite like hearing a loved one’s voice and letting them know that you’re thinking of them, especially when you happen to be working on a holiday — which public safety professionals are often required to do throughout the year. The simple act of a phone call can bring a smile to a mom’s face; knowing that she’s remembered and cherished is what makes the day special.
  2. On the Job with Mom. We’ve heard of “take your child to work” days, but what about the reverse? 910919_68884786Why not take Mom for a ride in the cruiser or for a tour of the fire station, followed up by a tasty bowl of firehouse chili? Give her the opportunity to swell with pride over the selfless service that you provide to the public on a daily basis. Then thank Mom for her years of selfless service to the family, letting her know that she’s the example of sacrifice that you carry with you on the job.
  3. At-Home Bistro. Treating your mom to her favorite restaurant gives her a break, but sometimes that can be expensive and prone to long waits. Perhaps more than a crowded restaurant, Mom would enjoy dining on the patio for a bistro fare. Family members can cook the dishes Mom likes best, while Dad — donned in a black bowtie, cummerbund, stiffly starched white shirt and black slacks — waits on her. You can even print out mini menus and name cards for each place setting.
  4. Flower Power. 1007643_49911536Floral arrangements delivered to the door are an attentive way to show Mom you care; however, sometimes our budget does not allow such a generous gesture. If you live close by, Mom might prefer for you to be the one who delivers the bouquet, and it doesn’t have to be a professional arrangement from a florist. Some of the most picturesque and prized bouquets are nosegays of freshly plucked flowers from the garden.
  5. A Child’s Contribution. The authenticity of a child’s handmade card or poster far outshines any item in the greeting card aisle. The word “mother” can be used as an acronym, with the child listing why they love Mom next to each letter. Scrawled writing, misspelled words and scribbling outside the lines make the artwork even more precious and memorable, for these characteristics embody the innocence and sincerity of a childlike heart. Besides, store bought cards are rarely plastered on the refrigerator or hung on the wall; it’s the handcrafted sentiments that are proudly displayed as masterpieces.
  6. An Adventure of Firsts. 1043013_47530130While this point is not referenced in the above statistics, it is an idea worthy of consideration: Why not do something together that’s a first for one — or both — of you? Perhaps Mom has never played putt-putt golf, tried ice-skating or gone horseback riding. Or maybe she’s never attended a play at the local theater. Regardless of the recreational or entertainment choice, it’s the time together that moms value the most.

Often, the most treasured gifts of all do not come in extravagantly wrapped packages but in unassuming acts of thoughtfulness. Acts that say, “Mom, I appreciate all the sacrifices you’ve made for me over the years, like the times you stayed up with me when I was sick, even when you didn’t feel well yourself. Your sacrifices are what guide me on the job when I’m called to sacrifice for the good of another. For all of this, and so much more, Mom, I thank you.”

 

 

GoPro Cameras

We put the GoPro HERO4 to the test with Active Shooter Training.

Capture stunning HD video and pictures with a wearable or mountable camera. The Wi-Fi enabled HERO4 is the most advanced GoPro with enhanced video performance, sharpness and audio system. The GoPro HERO4 cameras combine versatility and pro-quality 1080p image quality with the convenience of a touch-screen display. Packed with professional-grade features to help you capture cinema-quality video and best-in-class audio.

 

Selecting the Perfect Polo

As winter gives way to the sun-filled days of summer, we trade our bulky jackets and sweaters for lighter layers. The more comfortable you are, the more you can focus on the job at hand. Since polos provide comfort while maintaining a professional appearance, they are becoming increasingly accepted in public safety. Fortunately, the two core ingredients for public safety uniforms — function and comfort — are incorporated into modern polos. Many include functional components, such as integrated mic loops, badge tabs, pen pockets and even built-in UV protection.

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Today’s vast selection of polos offer welcome variety, but what’s the difference between all of these? It really boils down to the fabric. They fall broadly into three fabric contents: cotton, blended and polyester.

Cotton

For work indoors, you may prefer traditional cotton or blends. Soft and breathable, cotton polos are time-tested favorites, which often come with limited color-retention and soil-release features. Affordably-priced, cotton is a practical option for the budget-conscious public safety professional.

Blended

Usually comprised of cotton and polyester when it comes to polos, blends are more durable and colorfast than 100% cotton shirts. They are also more resistant to wrinkles, fading and shrinkage than pure cotton, making them a low-maintenance choice for every-day duty uniforms.

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Polyester

Typically used for top-of-the-line performance wear, polyester is lightweight, extremely breathable and moisture-wicking. Not just for tropical climates, performance fabrics are an excellent choice for any high-energy or athletic situation. These are usually constructed of 100% jersey-knit polyester or a poly-elastane blend that stretches easily over a vest. The cooling features of performance fabric are especially advantageous when wearing body armor in the summer months.

After determining which fabric best suits your needs, construction is a primary consideration, such as mesh ventilation for improved airflow, side-stretch panels and gusseted sleeves for increased mobility, and drop tails for extended coverage. The free range of motion that such construction allows is quite beneficial for the public safety professional who faces high-stress situations that demand maximum flexibility.

Maintaining a professional appearance is more comfortable than ever. Whether you’re working a desk, patrolling a beat or responding to an emergency call, picking the right polo begins with the fabric. With the many customization options available, it’s easy to project an image of authority. Call us at 866.673.7643 for more details on customizing your polo.

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Recommended brands:

TRU-SPEC: A customer favorite that delivers features, quality and value

Galls: Premium materials and features at budget-friendly prices

5.11 Tactical: Innovative features with high-quality construction

LawPro: Traditional style and excellent value

Elbeco: High-tech materials and duty-centric design

OGIO: Stylish, sports-inspired designs and materials

Finding Tactical Pants That Work as Hard as You

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Long before tactical pants became the norm in law enforcement, they were scaling mountains and heading into the backcountry. Royal Robbins was an avid climber and kayaker who set out on a new adventure to create outdoor clothing, over 25 years ago. Among their successful styles were the well-known 5.11 Pants. Robbins named the pants after the highest rock climbing difficulty level listed on the Yosemite Decimal System (at that time).

5.11 Tactical pants were discovered by some FBI agents, who also enjoyed climbing, and knew the pants would be a huge benefit at work. The pants were soon supplied to the FBI Academy in Quantico, Virginia where they caught the attention of some law enforcement officers.
Over the past decade, companies like 5.11, Tru-Spec, Propper and Galls have merged features of dress and battle-ready pants to create a new category for casual or duty wear. Although tactical pant features are constantly changing, there are a few key aspects to keep in mind when selecting your pair:

1. Fabric

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Your pants need to carry their weight, plus all the gear you may load into the cargo pockets. A ripstop fabric will give you the durability you need whether you’re on duty, off duty or hiking. Basically, the fabric stops rips from spreading with a crosshatch thread pattern.

The most common fabric blends are polyester-cotton or cotton canvas. A polyester-cotton blend is ideal for year-round wear since it gives you more stretch and mobility with the comfort of cotton. Cotton canvas stands up to rigors of daily work and becomes increasingly more comfortable over time.

2. Pockets

Modern tactical pants have evolved from the traditional cargo pants to now feature a more streamlined look and functionality. Most are outfitted with two bellowed cargo pockets plus utility, knife and magazine pockets. The key is to make sure your pockets are reinforced to ensure your gear doesn’t create holes.

3. Stain and Soil Resistance

You will also want to make sure your tactical pants are treated for stain and soil resistance. The most common treatment is a DuPont™ Teflon® finish, which creates a protective barrier against oil- and water-based stains, dust and dry oil.

4. Knee Pad Pockets

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If you anticipate using your pants on duty or for training purposes, then make sure the knees are reinforced with built-in pockets for knee pad inserts.

Here’s what some people are saying about top-rated tactical pants:

5.11 Tactical TacLite Pro Ripstop Pants

I have been wearing 5.11 Tactical TacLite pants from Galls for the last 2 years. These are great pants!! They are very durable for everyday wear and I have never had any issues with fading.
***** Jason W., Marianna, FL

Galls Tactical Pants

Purchased 3 pants and I am pleasantly surprised. The fit is great and the comfort outstanding. The stretch waistband allows for comfortable movement at the range or in the office. I highly recommend these pants for anyone who is looking for comfort at an affordable price.
***** Ky. Probation and Parole Officer, Lexington, KY

TRU-SPEC 24-7 Ripstop Pants

I worked law enforcement in a plain clothes narco unit for several years and was always looking for quality, tactical clothing that would be street durable…I also love a lot of pockets / storage for any equipment I needed to carry on a daily basis…The Tru-spec rip stop pants met those needs…they also look great for casual wear as well…enough said!
***** Rob R., Stony Point, NY

PROPPER Lightweight Tactical Pants

I have a pair in every color…two in Khaki. Love them for all uses. Outdoors, hunting, working, casual wear…all the way around. Mostly I wear with untucked shirts so I can carry concealed. However, on days I have to tuck in my shirt, the side pocket with a pocket holster fits my Ruger LC9 perfectly.
***** MickHLR, Holy Lake Ranch, TX