For some of us at Spotterup there is that one thing on the kit, or one piece of gear which we focus on, or give more attention to, to gauge the rest of the functional ability of user or their equipment.  For me, it must be an IFAK – Individual First Aid Kit.  Maybe in part because of my experience, and in part because it’s an understated and often under-utilized tool which should really be in some form on first line, second line and third line gear.  It still irritates me when I see people with a full kit and no IFAK, or worse, no TQ.

If you think there is more than one way to approach a mag pouch, then you have to agree, there are multitude of ways to carry and stock an IFAK.  Maybe still, it’s the fact that commercial and niche factors play into this piece of gear so frequently, that when one is as straight forward and solid as you want, it’s just refreshing.

When Chase Tactical sent us the Warrior Assault Systems (WAS) IFAK from their Elite Ops Series, I was honestly excited.  Maybe because I already knew it would exceed expectations, or because I had expectations and was impressed by seeing more than expected.  One thought I initially had, is that this looked like another mag pouch.  I have seen other companies make attempts at slim or low profile IFAKs with the goal of blending them in with the rest of the kit.  The WAS IFAK is not one of those.

There is no concern that accessibility is compromised because you might confuse the IFAK with the mag pouch under stress.  This looks, feels, and is different.  And it looks sharp.  Basic, still low key, and sharp.  The WAS IFAK uses the KISS principle to perfection.  It is secure, easily accessible and quality made product.

Made of 500 denier Cordura, the pouch feels as tough as it looks.  It is a top opening IFAK with Velcro closure, and two Velcro panels on the outside of the front.  The back of the product is stiffened within the nylon itself, and offers an additional pocket for a pair of shears or a blade.   I was happy that with the clip removed from the G-Code holster, a Colonel Blades Low Viz fit there beautifully.  The pouch is big enough for a full basic IFAK loadout.  By that I mean the necessities required by TCCC or TECC guidelines.

I over packed mine on purpose, stuffing a full double occlusive, Combat Gauze, 6” Israeli dressing, Z-pack gauze, nasal airway,  and a decompression needle into it.   My feeling though, is that the WAS Elite Ops IFAK is best utilized for less with more, and more of necessities such as a smaller combat bandage, z-pack gauze,  tape and so on.  A Phokus Research Shield Trauma Kit fits there like butter on a peach cobbler in Alabama, with room for more.  Either way, it can accommodate a full IFAK, a backup kit if you have a more complete IFAK or a team kit somewhere else, or just what you consider the basics.

As we discussed before, this can be dictated by your environment, mission, or skill level.  On that note, for the brothers and sisters downrange who don’t get the info or fall asleep on the Power Point, let’s define what a full IFAK is.  It’s what you need, and not necessarily what you’re issued or how you’re issued it.

Just because there is lip balm, rehydration salts and toilet paper in your issued IFAK, doesn’t mean all of it should stay there.  Likewise, the tourniquets you’re issued should be out of the IFAK and out of the plastic wrapping they come in.  If your supply section tells you they’ll need it back before you go home, pretend it is ice cream and lick it all.  I think there is a rule that they will not ask for it back.

This is another area where the WAS IFAK shines.  There are MOLLE loops on each side of the pack, allowing for multiple tourniquets and multiple ways to attach them.  This can be rubber bands, another pouch, or whatever your preference is.  If you have your TQ’s elsewhere and good to go, this can be used for chem lights, markers, or looks simply professional as is.

The lid allows for enough adjustment with the Velcro closure that an over packed or lightly packed kit will be secure and look good.  It has a large pull tab on the bottom, and is easily located in low light, and with gloves.   There is a drainage hole on the bottom of the pouch, which allows for, yes you guessed it.  But you can also loop a bungee through the inside of the compartment, allowing for an attachment point on the bottom.

I really appreciate the type of MOLLE attachments used by Warrior Assault Systems.  They are long, flexible and very easy to work with.  There is enough rigid material in the straps to keep the full IFAK secure and tight, whether it is on a vest, battle belt, regular belt or wherever.

I have to stress that these are really easy to manipulate, and very well made, because I moved it from one platform to another over and over,  and not one swear word.  I also really like the idea of having a long webbing strap with a D-ring on the end.  The strap is secured to the bottom inside the IFAK, and can be snaked under your contents with the D ring exposed to elevate the contents you need, and allow easier access.  The D ring can also aid in dummy-cording tape or another item.

I must be a big dummy, because I want to dummy cord everything…    I do feel that under stress and with limited training, some may simply yank on the strap letting all of the contents fall to the ground, only to get down and look for what they need.  The idea resembles a US Army standard IFAK and similar designs, which when pulled expose either another panel or pocket with items secured.  I am usually not a fan of this, because to me it adds weight and complexity.   I think a straight webbing strap such as the one used by WAS here is a clever and functional idea.  I hope that a future model might have 2-3 elastic loops sewn into the strap at intervals, to allow for dummy cording and securing of smaller items.

The WAS Elite Ops IFAK comes in coyote brown, MultiCam, black and OD green.  It measures 7x4x3 inches, or 18x10x8 centimeters.   Chase Tactical – a select dealer of WAS awesomeness, Chase Tactical offers it at $37.95. LE and Mil purchase benefits apply.  Made of US Mil Spec materials, functional and with a solid warranty, the WAS IFAK is an outstanding value, and will be my go-to IFAK.

Material Disclosure

I received this product as a courtesy from the manufacturer via Spotter Up so I could test it and give my honest feedback. I am not bound by any written, verbal, or implied contract to give this product a good review. All opinions are my own and are based off my personal experience with the product.

*The views and opinions expressed on this website are solely those of the original authors and contributors. These views and opinions do not necessarily represent those of Spotter Up Magazine, the administrative staff, and/or any/all contributors to this site.

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About The Author

Rob has been in public service for some 17 years, holding several specialized assignments, and becoming a law enforcement and emergency services instructor. He has 10 years in the military and currently serving as a reservist, fire team leader and medic. He enjoys learning, writing, doing grunt work, and helping other vets in need. To further that goal, they started Grunt’s BBQ and Easy Company. A future mobile chow hall, coming to an AO near you.

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