I just got back from the Special Operations Forces Industry Conference in Tampa, FL. This was the second year we attended the Exhibit Hall. There is some cross-over from military operations to police services, especially in the SWAT arena. Funding for military experimentation often leads to technological developments that trickle down into law enforcement. While I doubt our TAC van will be sporting a Dillon Aero Titanium Gatling Gun anytime soon, I am always interested in seeing new products for the Warfighter. You never know when some of these things will be the latest rage for those of us defending the streets.
I was particularly pleased to speak to a few old hands that are ex-law enforcement and now company reps for defense firms and manufacturing interests. It seems these retired officers are lending their practical input into the creative mix.
I had one discussion with an LEO veteran who was now with an equipment designer. The talk waxed nostalgic about how our SWAT teams all looked like British 22nd SAS in the late 1980′s with us “kitted out” in Basic Black: balaclavas, jumpsuits, flapped holsters for 9mm pistols, and Heckler and Koch MP-5′s. Things certainly have changed.
I saw a few interesting products that I’ll post articles about in the coming days…