I don't tend to write a whole lot about things like body armor and the like. Partly because – and I'm sorry to generalize – that tends to be more of a guy thing and I just never had that much interest in it. But when Hardcore Defense offered to send me a ballistic shield, I was definitely intrigued because a shield is useful in all sorts of ways that body armor is not.
Note: I was sent the product at no charge for review purposes. However, the review is honest and without bias.
So…ballistic shields. That's something I'd never considered adding to my preps before I was contacted for this review. But, once I had my hands on it, I realized that this was the thing that was missing from my safe room article. A lot of us live in homes that don't have a good place for a safe room. Newer homes have thin walls that could easily be pierced by something as common as a 9 mm. If you sent your children or vulnerable family members to hide in a safe room, this would add one more layer or protection.
As well, if you're in tornado country and your place to shelter is the bathtub, you could put this across the part where your heads are for an added layer of protection. This isn't what the company recommends – it's just something that occurred to me as an additional use.
The item I got is the Alpha Shield by Hardcore Defense. The first thing I thought when I got the box was, "Dang, this sucker is heavy! It actually isn't overwhelmingly heavy at 14 pounds, but if you aren't fit, holding up 14 pounds would wear on you pretty quickly. The handle and elbow cushion are both helpful.
For an older person or a child, I'd recommend crouching behind it and letting the floor take some of the weight. After all, they won't be hiding behind it for just a couple of seconds. The plan would be for them to retreat into the room, bar the door, and get into the safest place in the room behind the shield.
It's pretty compact and I'll be storing mine under my bed with the handle to the outside.