Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Nomad SAR: Valeria, HMG Hellcat

Here's the start of a new project I've had in the works for over a year now.

Why do we have such hi-vis uniforms? We get that question a lot, actually. If we're supposed to be this high-tech, elite commando unit, why does Nomad SAR wear uniforms that make us look like traffic cones?

One reason is that in today's tactical environment, camo is pretty useless. Between thermosensors, satloc, heartbeat locators and all manner of detection equipment I can't even talk about, squiggly brown lines on your pants aren't going to matter very much. So we wear what we want to wear. And these duds look pretty flash.

Of course, there's a few tactical reasons for blaze orange, too. First of all, we want everyone to see us coming. If we're on a rescue op, the guns are security, and we're hoping that the vics are looking for us as hard as we're looking for them. If we're on an opposed retrieval, sometimes the bad guys see us coming and suddenly reconsider their decision not to negotiate. The smart bad guys, anyway.

And also, when we do need to do a hot jump, we want to be able to see each other quickly. Our uniforms pop in our peripheral vision, so in the chaos and madness of a lightning op, we know where everyone is at all times.

But honestly? We wear orange and red because it doesn't matter if we're spotted. By the time you see us, you're dead already.

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