Chest Protector Stops Bullet

All The Gear, All The Time--Especially Under Fire

The hazards of dirt riding include chest-high branches on the trail, rocks tossed up by the rider ahead, and buddies with video cameras strapped to their helmets recoding your every bonehead move. There isn’t much you can do about that third thing except get new friends, but good body armor can help protect you from the branches and rocks.

Sometimes it can also help with bullets, according to the website of The Chief, a weekly newspaper in Squamish, British Columbia, which reports that a motorcyclist was riding with a friend near Cat Lake when he was hit by a .22-caliber bullet fired by some campers shooting in the woods.

What might have been a tragic story ended up being a testament to choosing the right riding gear. The unnamed victim got off with a welt on his chest, some bruising, and probably a newfound respect for the wallop packed by even a tiny bullet like a .22. Royal Canadian Mounted Police Sgt. Wayne Pride credited the rider’s chest protector for preventing him from being seriously ventilated.

The Chief goes on to say that the RCMP located and seized the rifle used in the incident, and that charges of careless use of a firearm are being "evaluated."