Monday, March 17, 2014

Phokus Research Group SONS Trauma Kits

I received a Phokus Research Group Law Enforcement Trauma Kit in a Facebook Giveaway in Oct of 2013. Since then I was given two other versions of their trauma kits to T&E and do a review on. With that said, here is my review.

First a link to Phokus’s website with a very good breakdown of the contents of the kits:
http://phokusresearch.com/phokus-products/sons_trauma_kit/


Phokus has also released the following videos showing deployment:
Standard
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7iIICaWHB7E

Low Vis
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2bzXuOGFKIo

SONS vs Standard
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sG8nx3Oq8Vs


The biggest thing that one will notice as an issue with use of one of the SONS kits, is team standardization. If your whole team is not running them and trains to roll the team mate onto their back and remove the kit from the plate pocket, vs looking for an IFAK on their kit that is not their. This is a problem, but only if you allow it a problem.

The packing list of these kits follows the well established and proven TCCC protocols. Phokus follows the recommendation to have your TQ not be in the IFAK, but separate where it is rapidly accessible.

Most impressive to me, was the packaging materials used to seal the kits. It is packaged inside of what Phokus calls “Heavy-duty Medical grade vinyl.” I’ve only been carrying the LETK in the Plate Carrier I use for Active Assailant/High Risk incidents since receiving it in Oct, but so far it does not show signs of wear.  I had a friend and fellow LEO use the Standard Mil kit in his plate carrier for the last few months as well, with no signs of wear.

The Low Vis kit has been carried in my cargo pocket on duty or in many types of pants pockets off duty (Vertx, Carhartt, etc) or in backpacks. It gets pulled out at least once a day, if not more and swapped back and forth. This should cause extreme wear, but did not which surprised me.

I could take photos of the kits after wear for this long, but it would be pointless as they just have some dust on them  from the dry dusty area I live and work in.

Training wise is the only place I see a big downside to the SONS style of kits over a normal kit. This is an issue that is easily overcome by team standardization and training with the kits.

One thing to be aware of, is that your armor carrier needs to be easy to open for easy access. A top loading armor carrier (Paraclete RAV, Eagle CIRAS, etc.) is not ideal in comparison to a bottom opening carrier (Crye JPC, Blue Force Gear LMAC, Mayflower line, etc).





LETK - Law Enforcement Trauma Kit

Next to 10x12 plate:



Placed over 10x12 Plate:



Reverse side over 10x12 plate:



Deployment Trauma Kit and Lo-Vis Trauma Kit:



Deployment:



Kit lain over plate pocket on a Medium Crye JPC:



Kit inserted behind plate:



Kit fully inserted with tab out:



Back of plate without SONS, but with Plate and Plate Backer:



Back of plate with SONS and Plate:



Low-Vis Deployment Kit:



Low-Vis next to Pocket DARK:


Low-Vis, Pocket DARK and PMAG 30:



Low-Vis, Pocket Dark and PMAG thickness:



Low-Vis and PMAG thickness on end:



Low-Vis and Pocket Dark next to pocket of 5.11 PDU Uniform Pants:



Pocket DARK over PDU Pocket:


Low-Vis over PDU Pocket:


Pocket DARK thickness in PDU Pocket:



Low-Vis thickness in PDU Pocket:

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