In a survival situation, after a natural disaster or when the grid goes down, it’s important to protect yourself and your family. How do we do that? We start with ballistic protection—because who knows what sorts of thugs will try to harm you when law and order have gone out the window? GPS systems are another must-have piece of kit in a survival situation. Here are some of the best new survival products hitting the market in 2015.

AR500 Armor EPC

AR500 Armor EPC, AR500 Armor

AR500 Armor recently introduced a bare-bones, inexpensive armor carrier called the Emergency Personal Carrier (EPC) that is designed to be stashed in a car or kept handy at work or home, ready for instant use in a crisis. This carrier has a simple neck strap and waist belt with a quick-release fastener. The AR500 Armor carrier may be outfitted with either soft armor or a bullet-resistant steel plate. This carrier may be thrown over a child and cinched in place in an emergency or may be used by an individual to get clear of a dan-ger zone. This carrier is like a life vest for active shootings. For more information, visit http://www.ar500armor.com or call 602-501-9607.

BulletSafe Body Armor

BulletSafe Body Armor, bulletsafe

Body armor is readily available but expensive. Law enforcement vests are typically subsi-dized by the federal government and sport retail prices that are beyond the financial reach of most civilians. BulletSafe provides true NIJ Level III body armor to concerned citizens at an affordable price. Tom Nardone, BulletSafe’s owner, refers to himself as the Henry Ford of body armor. Users can have any color they wish so long as it is black. Vests are available in a variety of sizes, and a more expensive vest includes pouches and MOLLE webbing. The basic BulletSafe vest is warrantied for five years, and the company’s carrier is made from 600-denier polyester. BulletSafe even produces protective vests for dogs and a novel ar-mored ball cap. For more information, visit http://www.bulletsafe.com or call 800-809-0610.

DeLorme inReach

DeLorme inReach, delorme

InReach satellite communicators combine the indispensable utility of a GPS navigator with a worldwide emergency communications capability. The inReach navigator has all the easy-to-use features you could want. DeLorme is a map company first and foremost, and the InReach combines with the Earthmate app as well as the Mapshare web resource to al-low operators to plan all aspects of an upcoming trip in advance and sync this information with the inReach prior to departure. The inReach features an easy-to-use interface, built-in navigation capabilities, a digital compass, waypoints and a color-coded map view.

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In addition to its navigation features, the InReach also offers emergency texting ser-vices anywhere on the globe through the Iridium worldwide satellite phone system. The inReach provides convenient 160-character text messaging as well as interactive SOS communications. There is also an SOS button that automatically alerts the 24-hour GEOS search-and-rescue monitoring center. GEOS can coordinate emergency services interactive-ly around the world. For more information, visit http://www.inreachdelorme.com.

FLIR Scout II

FLIR Scout II, FLIR

FLIR is the recognized leader in thermal detection technology. The new Scout II handheld thermal sight puts state-of-the-art thermal capabilities into the hands of many American citizens. The Scout II is compact and runs off on an internal rechargeable battery yet still brings comparable capabilities to larger, more expensive units. FLIR thermal detection ca-pabilities can be game changers in a survival situation. A FLIR detector deprives a hostile threat of the capability to hide behind smoke, haze or light cover. The Scout II brings the same capability used by our warfighters in combat to a civilian scenario.

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A FLIR detector allows a concerned homeowner to scan the surrounding yard after being alerted to suspicious activity without illuminating the porch. Conventional external lighting will frequently illuminate the homeowner without being sufficiently powerful to penetrate the far reaches of a darkened yard. A FLIR detector can detect a threat hiding at reasonable ranges strictly based upon temperature gradients. For more information, visit http://www.flir.com or call 503-498-3293.

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