The general public is beginning to realize something that First Responders and Military personnel have known for a long time. That “something” is the fact that sometimes you cannot maneuver on, or even engage the enemy and that your best option may be to take cover and begin the triage of casualties. A common trend of the “active shooter” situations we have seen have been in places where weapons are prohibited, or in the case of the most recent Vegas shooting, where even if you were armed you wouldn’t be able to engage due to sheer distance. Airports, concert venues, sports stadiums, and schools are all examples of places that you cannot usually carry a weapon to without the proper credentials, however, something you can take with you is a first aid kit specifically designed to treat trauma patients like massive hemorrhaging and sucking chest wounds.
Whether you want to carry a kit for yourself only or you want to carry something a little more robust to allow for the treatment of several casualties, you can look to Vanquest Gear for very effective and easily organizable medical pouches. The FATPack comes in 3 different sizes, 4×6, 5×8, and 7×10 (pictured below). I recently received the FATPack 7×10 first aid trauma pack.
The 7×10 measures at just those dimensions when closed but opens up by way of vertical zippers on each side. When closed, the top flap is secured by a nice hefty piece of hook and loop. When opened, the wing-like sides lay flat with the back panel and open to about 2 inches on either side. The front portion also folds out to the bottom and measures about 4×9. The organizational capabilities on the inside is what really makes this pack appealing to me, the last thing I want is to be caring for a casualty but not be able to easily identify where the piece of gear I need is. The center rear pocket is large, double stacked and has an elastic band running the width of the pocket on the outside. To give you an idea of size, I keep an SAM splint and two chest seals in those two pockets. On the flanks, or wings as I call them, there are single slim pockets and elastic bands on the outside that is perfect for securing a TQ. The front fold out flap boasts an elastic shock cord ladder that is adjustable and perfect for materials you need fast access to. For my setup I have a large pressure dressing and several packs of combat gauze held in by the cord. There is also a detachable zippered pocket that is good for smaller items like band aids, bacitracin and like sized items.
On the exterior of the pack it is covered in molle on the sides and the back, while the front has a small pocket made out of laser cut molle that is big enough to fit another pressure dressing and a needle decomp for quick access. It doesn’t come with any way to effectively attach it to a pack but you can separately purchase a hook and loop adapter or molle sticks.
The 7×10 FATPack is too large to use as an IFAK and to fit on a belt or plate carrier but it is perfect for use as a larger CLS bag and to be attached to a bag. Ultimately I am very impressed with the setup of this bag and it definitely serves its intended purpose. Whether it’s being carried on a go bag, in a patrol car, in your vehicle, or in a tactical vehicle, this is a good choice to fit any of those roles. If you are like me, and many others like me, you probably have a number of medical kits spread out throughout your house and vehicles. The different sizes of FATPacks Vanquest offers can fill any role. Remember, it is just as important to know how to use that gear as it is to have it readily available.
Author – Wes Nanny is a former Marine with combat deployments to Afghanistan. He is now pursuing a career in law enforcement.