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Body Armour is Causing Pain in Police Officers

More than half of police officers when questioned in a survey said that they were suffering injuries due to their uniform.

6 out of 10 respondents said they had suffered “pain or injury” as a result of their uniform and 28% said their uniform made pre-existing injuries worse. More than half said the uniform hindered their ability to do their jobs properly.  

Back pain, hip injuries, rashes, sciatica and stomach pains were all claimed to be caused by ill-fitting uniform. Some also complained that the uniform was restricted making it harder to run, restrain and apprehend suspects especially when driving or getting out of vehicles.

Many officers said that their poor uniform led to them being cold, wet, sweaty, uncomfortable, fatigued and unhappy.

Some of the clothing that caused the pain or injuries were the stab-proof vests, body armour, utility belt and shoulder harnesses.

“Body armour serves a very important function but can lead to problems when it’s kept on for too long. The human skeleton isn’t built to carry around this amount of weight long-term and it could contribute to significant health issues”, said Hertfordshire Police Federation secretary Al Wollaston.

Wearing full kit in office seating or in police cars could be putting officers at risk for back, neck and shoulder problems. Car seats and office seats were not designed to be sat in for prolonged periods of time by officers wearing body armour and it could add to the pains and strains. Police officers should only be wearing body armour when they need to.

Zoe Wakefield, Federation Chair, said “ When you are sat at your desk, typing away, take it off because it could have a long-term impact on your back. Obviously you can’t sit in a chair properly if you’ve got body armour on. Officers need to relieve themselves of that extra weight and use their meal breaks to take it off and have a stretch”

Herald Scotland
Police Fed