Although police officers in most countries are issued bulletproof vests, they don't necessarily wear them at all times - would you want to heave one of those things around for an entire shift? What they do often carry, however, are clipboards. Taking the "every little bit helps" approach, Ohio's IMPACT Armor Technologies has put two and two together, and come up with something that should actually offer some protection - a Ballistic Clipboard.
Besides holding arrest warrants, speeding tickets and other cop-type papers, the clipboard is also capable of stopping bullets. It reportedly "provides multi-hit protection against 9 mm, .357, .40, and .44 mag rounds" at up to point blank range, in hot or cold temperatures. It is also said to protect against knives and blunt weapons. Unlike a vest, however, it weighs less than two pounds (907 grams).
While some people might picture an officer desperately trying trying to hide their entire body behind a clipboard, it presumably isn't intended to work that way. More likely, in situations where an assailant fires wildly at an officer's chest, there would actually be a pretty good chance of their bullet striking the clipboard instead.
It's apparently not that wacky of an idea, as IMPACT first designed the device in response to a request from local law enforcement personnel. Additionally, the company is not the only one offering such a product. Although the somewhat riot shield-like design of IMPACT's clipboard is unique, more ordinary-looking bulletproof clipboards are available from several other manufacturers.
The Ballistic Clipboard can be purchased via the IMPACT website, for US$150.
The video below contains more information on the product.
See the stories that matter in your inbox every morning