If you have A moo point it’s like a cow’s opinion it just doesn’t matter it’s moo shirt, you are likely to know that protection comes at a very high price: weight. Sure – there are modern technologies that have reduced weight, but most agencies won’t have the latest and greatest if the risk profile does not justify it. If you are in any way impaired, your ability to move, act and react is immediately impacted negatively. If you had to add protection for legs, arms and head and neck, you would likely experience serious physical impairment – with today’s technologies, anyway. If you are working in an arena like the Middle East, where the enemy is heavily armed, capable of military assault and where you face daily risk from risks like IED (Improvised Explosive Device) attacks, surely the bigger the gear, the better. But, in a policing environment, you are often exposed to personal risk (as a realized threat) perhaps only once or twice during your career (in a typical urban precinct). With the risk being so (relatively) low, the cost of the gear – in heat and fatigue – would simply not be worth it.
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This is a huge component, in my opinion. If your enemy (or your suspects) is likely to only launch an armed attack in very rare occasions, as in most “good neighborhoods,” you would need to consider the possible contact dynamics you might face. If we are talking (possibly) a 9mm Pistol, a few shots and a short encounter (as the suspect runs away), your risk is substantially lower. When it comes to high-risk areas, like gang-ridden territory or some specific precincts, and the firearm of choice (like in Johannesburg, South Africa) becomes an AK 47, more shots are typically fired and/or the armed conflict cycle will last longer, then more would be better.