A rescue knife basically functions as a seat belt cutter and glass breaker. The cutter is often a combination of hook, and serrated or razor sharp edge designed to cut ropes, thick rubber, cords, webbing, heavy clothing and various fibers usually seen in rescue situations.
It is used to make the initial cut on tough materials, such as seat belts and ski jackets.
Hook-and-serrated edge combination is often preferred for belt-cutting tasks because the mechanism allows for no slipping of the material from the cutter.
The main knife blade is often featured separately from the tool’s other functions. The window glass breaker should be tough enough to shatter glass at moderate force.
In addition to these demanding functions, the tool must be handy enough to bring along everywhere and every time.
Presented below are four rescue knives evaluated for their usefulness during emergency situations, based on customer reviews on Amazon and web research. Each range in price.
1. Benchmade Triage
The Benchmade Triage (915 or 916) is a triple-utility tool of the highest quality, as can be expected from a Benchmade.
It has a solid 420J stainless steel plain-edge knife for general cutting purposes; a safety hook cutter that cuts superbly at the slightest pressure; and a tough carbide glass breaker that’s hardly noticeable until it breaks some glass.
The Triage comes with a clip that makes it easy to bring along while being fastened on the pocket.
Designed with a thick blade, the knife is on the heavy side at 5.1 ounces but still keeps that discreet shape that passes it off as a gentleman’s folder.
2. Victorinox Swiss Army Knife Rescue Tool
What tool could be more reliable during rescues than a Victorinox which firefighters and rescue workers helped design? The Victorinox SAK Rescue Tool comes with the basic knife blade, belt-cutter and glass-breaker plus a few other tools.
Instead of the usual hook for belt cutting, the Rescue Tool has bent serrated blade which surprisingly works great on a task often thought to require hook-shaped blade.
The cutter is quite long and has a blunt protected tip, which should allow for dead-on cutting on stubborn seat belts yet safe for the person being rescued.
The glass breaker is non-carbide yet proved very reliable when tested, according to customer reviewers on Amazon. There’s a serrated knife designed for tough cutting jobs and glass disc saw for shatter-proof glass.
Well, the screwdriver, wire stripper, toothpick, tweezers, bottle opener and reamer don’t look like emergency tools. However, the fact that the tool has everything you’d likely look for in an EDC multitool makes it easier to bring along and offsets the fact that it’s quite heavy at 5.82 ounces.
3. T3 Tactical Auto Rescue Tool
StatGear again comes up with a no-nonsense rescue tool that does the job at half the price of most tools in the same category.
T3 Tactical Auto Rescue Tool has a spring-loaded window glass breaker made with a steel tip.
At a push, the retractable steel-tipped window punch shoots out and shatters glass. A 3-and-¼ inch blade made of 440C stainless steel is serrated halfway.
The knife has a steel liner lock mechanism for secure deployment and lockup. The same lock system is employed for the 440C stainless steel hook belt cutter.
With an LED light, stainless steel belt clip and nylon belt sheath, it’s a mean emergency tool to carry around. It weighs 6.4 ounces.
4. Blackhawk HawkHook Silver-Handle Knife
The Blackhawk HawkHook Silver-Handle Knife features a 2.25-inch AUS8 stainless steel serrated blade with frame-locking mechanism and ambidextrous thumb stud for easy opening.
The compact tool weighs only 4 ounces, and unbelievably features the following – glass-puncher, bottle opener, flat screwdriver, pry tip, wire stripper and lanyard hole.
For its small size, it feels hefty making for a solid grip without being weighty, according to customer reviewers on Amazon and web research. That could be its biggest plus – it can easily slip into the collar of a jacket for an effortless reach in times of emergencies.
What is the best rescue knife on the market?
We’ve featured good rescue tools at diverse price points. That was intentional.
Each tool is a great rescue tool to reckon with and are definitely prized possessions that will stay with you for a lifetime and the next.
Without doubt, your grandsons will find them awesome.
Best EDC Folding Knife Reviews
5. Spyderco Paramilitary 2 Black Blade Knife
The Spyderco Para-Military 2 (PM2) is an upgraded version of Spyderco’s earlier edition.
The blade is longer and more streamlined; the handle has been much improved with a 50-50 finger choil that is useful for detailed cutting; the lanyard hole is bigger; it has a more rounded outline when closed; a new pivot system makes for easy deployment; and the drop-point blade has a longer tip.
It comes with a compression lock to secure the knife from any vertical or horizontal play, and 4-way clip for either left- or right-handed user.
The S30V blade is a superior type of steel – hard, easy to sharpen and holds its edge for a long time great for all-around utility EDC.
The blade length is 3.4 inches; the overall length of the knife is 8.3 inches; the length when folded is 4.8 inches. It does seem long for an EDC but, for all its blade features, it weighs a wisp at only 3.9 ounces.
6. Benchmade 940 Osborne
Often referred to as “the perfect EDC,” the Benchmade 940 Osborne weighs an unbelievable 2.9 ounces and packs a ton of features that make it every collector’s dream.
It’s an Osborne, so the Reverse Tanto design maintains the sturdiness and carries well its 0.118-inch thin blade from the belly to the tip.
Premium S30V steel was used for the 3.4-inch long blade a superior type of steel used for high-end knives because of its hardness, edge retention quality and resistance to corrosion.
As in most of Benchmade knives, the 940 uses the AXIS lock mechanism and ambidextrous thumb studs for slick deployment and solid lock.
The 940 has an elegant appearance that easily qualifies it in the gentleman’s folder category.
Its slim profile belies its toughness which makes it a logical choice for tactical defensive use.
The 940 is a combination of high-grade materials, classic look and detailed design that, no doubt, makes it a perfect EDC.
Wrapping it up
Although none of these are the best edc folding knife under $50 or $100 in 2015, these are some of the best out there.