How to Protect Yourself During a Riot

Tensions are running high in America.  Waves of protests began with the death of George Floyd and continue in cities across the country.  Some protests are peaceful; others turn into riots.  Protestors have blocked highways, damaged property, and looted stores nationwide.  If you live in an area affected by riots, you are right to be concerned for your safety.  A riot is a terrifying thing to experience.  A natural response to the threat of riots is to protect yourself with personal protective equipment.  Of course, most people don’t have riot gear just lying around the house.  Before investing in protective equipment for yourself, learn about the various types of protective equipment available and how they can protect you during a riot.


What Is Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)?

Personal protective equipment (PPE) is gear designed to protect an individual from harm.  It’s a broad category that includes medical equipment and military-grade gear.  Medical PPE includes items such as face masks, face shields, and surgical gloves.  Medical PPE protects the wearer from pathogens and potential infection.  But if you find yourself in a riot, you want to protect yourself from physical attack.  When choosing PPE gear for a riot, it is important to think about what type of violence you might be exposed to, then choose gear designed with that in mind.


Potential Threats at a Riot

Police trying to control a riot have a variety of non-lethal weapons they can use against a crowd.  But non-lethal weapons still cause a lot of pain and potentially long-lasting damage.  Tools that the police have at their disposal include rubber bullets, pepper spray, tear gas, flash bang grenades, and long-range acoustic devices.  Each of these targets the body in a different way, so it requires a different type of protection.

    • Rubber bullets: Rubber bullets are still bullets.  Protect yourself with a bulletproof vest and ballistic helmet and face shield.
    • Tear gas or pepper spray: Protect your eyes with shatterproof goggles (also great for protecting your eyes from rubber bullets and flashbang grenades).  Long sleeves and pants should protect your skin from irritants.
  • Flash bang grenades: The  flashes of blinding light and loud sound from a flash band grenade can shatter plastic, which can then hit you in the eye.  Shatterproof goggles can protect your eyes.  Ear plugs can protect your ears from the noise, but might be impractical during a riot.
  • Long-range acoustic devices:The sound from these devices can cause short-term and long-term hearing loss.  Construction-grade ear protection is your best defense but, again, may not be practical.
  • A riot also poses the threat of being in close contact with a crowd of unruly, violent people.  There are many PPE gear options for more full-body protection.  You can protect specific areas of your body by using pieces such as thigh/groin protectors, knee/shin guards, forearm/elbow protectors, and more.  Full-body riot suits are another option for total protection.


    The coronavirus is a persistent concern in any situation where you are in close contact with other people.  In addition to riot gear, continue to wear personal protective equipment that protects against viral particles.  Face masks and shields are a good supplement to any other PPE you choose to wear in case of riot.


    If you are interested in purchasing protective equipment to use in case of a riot, you may not know where to start.  Check out the selection of PPE available at Security Pro USA.  We have everything you need to protect your body during a riot.


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