AD at a indoor range


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bnelson2943
March 9, 2006, 01:25 PM
I know this is talked about often but for me this was a good (and fortunately cheep) lesson I want to share. I was at a indoor range pin shoot last night and was in the staging area (not the range) waiting for things to get set up when 10 feet from me a gun goes off. One guy goes down holding his arm and all of us in the room (about 8 of us) have ringing ears. The AD came from one of the most experienced shooters in the club. He has been shooting for many years and holds some of the fastest times at the pin shoots. He was putting away his carry gun and checked the chamber but I guess he didnít pull it back enough to see the round. He then dropped the hammer on what he thought was a empty chamber. His first words were ďIt wasnít supposed to be loaded.Ē Iím not coming down on this guy. We all, or at least I, have done some dumb things due to inattention and force of habit. He did check the chamber, he just was so used to looking and seeing it empty I think he just did the usual mechanics of clearing but did not pay all that much attention. He did have the gun pointed in a relatively safe direction. The bullet hit the concrete floor and the guy was hit in the arm by shrapnel. He was ok. He cleaned up the wound and still shot the match. Close call that really made me refocus on the way I clear and check my weapon. Just thought I would put this out there for thought.

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PlayboyPenguin
March 9, 2006, 01:31 PM
That is why I am always nervous at ranges to a degree. I know I have some control over my own actions and negligence but none over the guy next to me.

Master Blaster
March 9, 2006, 01:32 PM
ITs not an AD, accidental discharge, if the gun broke and it resulted in firing that would be an AD.

ITS a NEGLIGENT DISCHARGE ND

He was Negligent he broke 2 of the 4 rules.

And they let him shoot the match, If I had been the range officer, he would have been ejected from the club

Permanantly

jobu07
March 9, 2006, 01:34 PM
Thanks for sharing. It's always good to learn from a semi-serious mistake. At least no one was badly hurt. Can't get lax.

WayneConrad
March 9, 2006, 02:04 PM
The guy that taught me to shoot--a Bullseye shooter--instructed me to not just look at the chamber, but stick my finger in it. He explained that the eye sees what it's used to seeing. Sticking a finger in the chamber adds one more sense that has to be fooled.

rbernie
March 9, 2006, 02:18 PM
If I had been the range officer, he would have been ejected from the club

PermanantlyWow - tough crowd.

I can see asking the shooter to sit it out for the day. I can see making them write the four rules on the blackboard a couple of hundred times. I can see making them work off their debt to the group in any number of forms or fashions. After all - he endangered the group and he has a debt to pay off as a result.

But I can't see blacklisting the shooter for the rest of his life.

Werewolf
March 9, 2006, 02:24 PM
The guy that taught me to shoot--a Bullseye shooter--instructed me to not just look at the chamber, but stick my finger in it. He explained that the eye sees what it's used to seeing. Sticking a finger in the chamber adds one more sense that has to be fooled.That's how I was taught - by my father and by the military.

A finger in the chamber is awful hard to fool. There just ain't no room in that chamber for both a finger and a round. :D

Master Blaster
March 9, 2006, 02:45 PM
Wow - tough crowd.

I can see asking the shooter to sit it out for the day. I can see making them write the four rules on the blackboard a couple of hundred times. I can see making them work off their debt to the group in any number of forms or fashions. After all - he endangered the group and he has a debt to pay off as a result.

But I can't see blacklisting the shooter for the rest of his life

I can and here is why.

1. He was not on the line shooting and he was handling a loaded firearm in a room full of people, his loaded carry gun according to the story. Just doing that in the club room or behind the line with other shooters forward of you would be grounds for being tossed out of BOTH gun clubs I belong to.

2. He pulled the trigger on a loaded firearm for no REASON in a room full of people. That loaded gun was not pointed in a safe direction.

3. The above two could have resulted in the death of innocent fellow shooters. THE PERMANANT DEATH which cannot be taken back. You cannot recall a bullet once its fired.

When you handle firearms you cannot afford to make this mistake EVER.

This experienced shooter KNEW BETTER, but he still did it.

They let him shoot the match anyway.

Please post the name and location of your gun club so I can be sure to never ever ever shoot there or even set foot inside the door.

MacPelto
March 9, 2006, 02:50 PM
There's only two kinds of people...

Those that have and those that will.

Just try to keep yourself on the second list until you die.



Mac

bnelson2943
March 9, 2006, 02:57 PM
Master Blaster

You have given me great cause to pause and think. Maybe I shouldn't go back. The facts of what happened are exactly as stated in my post and the RO did nothing when informed. I have a sick feeling in my stomach as to what could have happened and what has not been done to prevent or discourage it happening again. I have to really consider this one..........

carnaby
March 9, 2006, 03:00 PM
How does what you refer to work in terms of "gun store etiquete? Say you are at the range looking at some pistols and you wanna try a different one in your carry holster on a whim. I was at the store and did this. I asked the clerk if I could pull out my carry piece and try the new gun in my holster. He said no prob, so I carefully pulled the gun, always pointing in a safe direction, finger away from trigger, ejected the magazine, cleared the chambered round. Handed pistol to clerk so he could check the chamber. Satisfied, he put mine on the counter and I holstered the piece that was for sale.

Any problem with this? Even if it is OK with the clerk, is this a bad idea? What are people's takes on this? :confused:

Seemed OK to me, but I haven't heard counter arguments, except above about the staging area.

Rumble
March 9, 2006, 03:07 PM
Carnaby:

IMHO, that would make me uncomfortable if I was another customer in the store. Not because you did anything wrong, necessarily, but just because it would seem to be unnecessary handling of a loaded gun--you do say "on a whim."

On the range, there's an expectation that folks will be handling loaded guns. I keep an eye out on what's going on around me. But in the shop floor, I would probably spend the whole time watching very carefully to see if I had to take cover. This isn't a slam against you, of course--you point out that you observed etiquette and rules--but I'd still watch, because, well, the question is always "am I paranoid enough."

I suppose that if it's okay with the gun store staff, it's okay, since they're in charge. But I wouldn't necessarily like it. I'd keep it to myself, though, unless you covered me with the muzzle, and then I'd be running around screaming and smackin' the top of my head.

lawson
March 9, 2006, 03:09 PM
even if the chamber is clear, lower the hammer slowly. it's just good common sense.

carnaby
March 9, 2006, 03:09 PM
Hmmm, actually, from that point of view I agree. If I saw a guy doing that, I'd keep an eye on him till the gun was cleared and on the counter.

On the other hand, when my carry gun went back in, the chamber was still clear. I think re-chambering the round there would be unacceptable.

AJ Dual
March 9, 2006, 03:11 PM
The guy did have an ND as opposed to an AD. The only true AD's I can think of are when I've been loaded, and aimed at my target and backstop, and I was unsure as to where the trigger let-off is and it's surprised me. That and possibly old/unsafe firearms that can discharge by handling other than dropping the trigger or hammer. (The cruddy Japanese Nambu pistol that had the exposed sear comes to mind.)

However, by having it pointed into the floor, he was following "Rule #2" (Always keep the firearm pointed in a safe direction./Never point the firearm at something you aren't willing to destroy.) and it saved everyone lots of grief. It sounds like the shrapnel into the other shooters arm wasn't worse than the occasional bleeder from a partial jacket riccochet from the backstop that we all run the risk of getting.

I would recognize that fact and not do anything as drastic as "banned for life either". The shooter was also in the staging area, presumably where guns are supposed to be handled and manipulated before going to the line. It's not like this happened at the concession stand...

While an ND is very serious, "zero tolerance" is as foolish at a range as it is anywhere else in life. How many people here can claim they have NEVER been in a car accident or a "close call" that was at least partialy, if not all their fault? Cut someone off? Ran a yellow light? Started merging lanes before checking your blind spot, then swerved back? How about with power tools? Fire? Knives?

Are you sure?

Not even once?

Never ever never never?

Honest?

Wow. Care to walk across my swimming pool at my next family get-together? It'll do my father-in-law a world of good. He's a retired pastor, and I think he's been having a "Crisis of Faith" recently...

Except for the most willfuly careless examples, we don't revoke peoples licenses for traffic accidents. Despite the fact that "DEAD IS FOREVER" etc. etc., and that cars have more energy/foot-pounds than any handgun or rifle, and also rack up many times more deaths than all fireams accidents.

If it was the culmination of unsafe gun-handling, or the ND came after prior complaints or warnings, that's a different story. Then permanant expusion is warranted.

It's called "exercising judgment". If the person is a long-time shooter and demonstrated impeccable gunhandling until this point, I would imagine that the humiliation, embarassment, and worry is more punishment than any range or club could dish out. Now that it's over and done with, I'd bet a months pay that guy NEVER has another ND again.

El Tejon
March 9, 2006, 03:19 PM
Fingers everyone!:uhoh:

Henry Bowman
March 9, 2006, 03:19 PM
My fingers are not unusually big and all of my fingers (even my pinky) are bigger than any handgun caliber.:scrutiny:

Don't just look; look and SEE. Then never pull the trigger unless pointed in a safe direction -- the safest direction available -- which at a range is at the backstop.

Stll, the 4 rules work because if you occasionally violate one or sometimes even two of them, nobody gets hurt.

WayneConrad
March 9, 2006, 03:24 PM
Mr. Bowman, my fingers are too large to actually put them in the chamber also. What I actually do, of course, is to put a finger over the end of the chamber. I never thought much about the words I was using to describe it.

JJpdxpinkpistols
March 9, 2006, 03:47 PM
At the PDXPinkPistols shoot this last weekend, we were teaching several newbies to shoot, and we took GREAT care to teach them the safety aspects, as well as showing them how to clear chambers, and in the case of revolvers, to open the cylinder when passing the gun to another for their firing pleasure.

There was one almost "check". it involved a Desert Eagle out of battery, clip removed, in a case, that one feller picked up. I politely reminded him that even tho it was out of battery, he still needed to watch his muzzle direction. He wasn't pointing *at* anyone, but he was still new, and I wanted to make sure nothing was *gonna* happen.

It pleased me greatly to see new shooters being exposed to shooting, and doing such a good job with safety.

There were no ND's, no AD's and nothing untoward at all.

use your fingers, use your brains, and obey the 4 rules, and you WILL be safe

:)

Dave P
March 9, 2006, 03:55 PM
"He then dropped the hammer..."


One more time :mad:

Remind me why we have to drop the hammer to be sure we are safe??

Larger
March 9, 2006, 04:09 PM
Masterblaster, the RO should get canned too. At least at the 2 clubs i'm members of (not private ranges), it is part of their job to verify all firearms are mags/cylinders out and slides back, unloaded. The RO will go and verify every single firearm on the line by sticking their pinky in the mag well and the chamber. Then the line goes cold and we can go downrange. Its the shooter's responsibility to unload, and the RO's responsibility to verify.

If a RO allowed a firearm to go from the hot line to the cold gun handling area without verifying a cleared weapon, every RO at that club should go to a mandatory safety refreshing meeting before holding any events.

And based on a recent poll here, the shooter was definitely guilty of not having the firearm pointed at the backstop too. Pin shooters tend to break at least one of the 4 (or 3, depending on the system) rules during the course of competition, and they definitely break the rapid fire rules at most public and semi-public ranges. Selective use of the rules, i'd say. Club hearing for the shooter and the RO on duty. And a definite safety meeting for all (even those not involved) before the next event.

Bill2k1
March 9, 2006, 04:09 PM
I'm with Dave P, empty is empty. A hammer down doesn't make it any emptier.

And why would he need to remove his concealed gun to (I assume) shoot another gun? There isn't a gun per person rule in life.

However being in the ND club ( I was young and did it in the best possible way, downrange) I can't be too hard on the guy. Lucky no one got seriously hurt, and I assure you, that guy will never forget it. Sure he should face some penalty. Nothing too sever, I am sure he will be harder on himself than anyone else could be.

PlayboyPenguin
March 9, 2006, 07:38 PM
Carnaby, my take on it is that you are lucky to have a gun store that allows you to carry. All the ones around here do not allow it.

Standing Wolf
March 9, 2006, 07:40 PM
Remind me why we have to drop the hammer to be sure we are safe??

Uh... Well, ah... Wait! I've got it! It reduces tension on springs, right? That justifies the risk, right? Right?

Dragoon44
March 9, 2006, 08:12 PM
Safe gunhandling is no trivial matter. I remember when out local gunshop got a new owner. I stopped in once or twice and after the second time observing the new owners unsafe gunhandling habits resolved to not go back. I told my chief that I was never going back there because that guy was going to end up shooting someone. sure enough about a month later while setting in the chiefs office we heard an ambulance dispatched to the gunshop reference a customer accidently being shot. I looked at the chief and said "told ya".

Soybomb
March 9, 2006, 08:23 PM
I don't find it that hard to believe he's one of the more experienced shooters. Humans have a tendency to start to gloss over things when it gets routine. How many times have you been driving and realized you don't even remember the last 15 minutes. I can easily see autopilot happening to shooters. I'm still new enough to be extra paranoid, I hope in 20 years that comfort level hasn't changed.

mzmtg whats your name on OT? I'm flattered to be quoted :D

Ovid
March 9, 2006, 08:40 PM
Am I understanding this correctly; the gentleman did not try to manually decock the pistol by slowly lowering the hammer with his thumb - he simply pulled the trigger and assumed that the chamber was empty?

rbernie
March 9, 2006, 08:54 PM
However, by having it pointed into the floor, he was following "Rule #2" (Always keep the firearm pointed in a safe direction./Never point the firearm at something you aren't willing to destroy.) and it saved everyone lots of grief.That was the mitigator that led me to believe that being banned for life would be a bit over the top. He was foolish but not totally stoooopid.

While an ND is very serious, "zero tolerance" is as foolish at a range as it is anywhere else in life.+1.

U.S.SFC_RET
March 9, 2006, 09:11 PM
NDs happen, they just do. That's why the 4 rules are in place as mentioned before in this thread. Finger in the chamber was taught to me as a 16 year old back in the 70s, don't trust your eyes. NDs have happened to a lot of people and have been discussed in this forum. Happened to me. I'll be darned to the best of my ability if it will ever happen again.

bnelson2943
March 10, 2006, 12:57 PM
Ovid

As I understood it he did have his thumb on the hammer but didn't really have enough pressure on it to restrict the fall. I think it was a case of a routine clearing drill; check the chamber, point in safe direction. drop hammer on empty chamber. The problems were; not in safe direction, not an empty chamber, not a drill that should be performed off the firing line. I think there have been some really great comments that I will incorporate into my safety habits. Why was I taught to drop the hammer upon clearing? Empty is empty. Good points Dave P and Bill2k1.

offthepaper
March 10, 2006, 01:21 PM
I think that IF the guy is allowed back onto the range he should immediatly be issued a flourecent orange "tin foil " type of headgear and be required to wear it any time he sets foot on club prpoerty for the next 6 months or so, also they might consider posting his picture near the club entrance (along with anyone else who has experienced a ND/AD at the range) sort of their own ND/AD alert postings, for a period of time also. Nothing like a little shame mixed with peer pressure to stay focused on safety at the range.
:D :mad:

rbernie
March 10, 2006, 01:22 PM
Please post the name and location of your gun club so I can be sure to never ever ever shoot there or even set foot inside the door.If you ever find yourself in the DFW area, lemme know and I'll tell you where you can find me. I wouldn't want you to subject yourself to being in the same place as my poor imperfect self. :rolleyes:

Technosavant
March 10, 2006, 01:31 PM
Yeouch.

I hope the guy with the ND at least covered medical bills for the guy who caught the shrapnel (and kicked in a few boxes of his choice of ammo).

For the record, I disagree with the saying "There are two types of shooters... those who have had a ND and those who will." Proper caution, always exercised, can prevent it. Never go into anything saying screwing up is inevitable. If a person believes that they cannot be perfectly safe with a firearm, they should rethink possession of one.

And yes, I have violated the four rules, but never more than one at any time, and still have yet to have a ND. I might have one one day, and I will be mortified should that happen, and I don't jump mercilessly on those who have had them. But they aren't inevitable.

Rockstar
March 10, 2006, 01:38 PM
Let me be the first to point out the obvious: Glocks don't have hammers, and, since we all know that only Glocks go off by themselves, the event could not have happened as reported. Of course, if he DIDN'T have a Glock, then SURELY that thumb safety and grip safety prevented the pistol from firing? :cool:

WayneConrad
March 10, 2006, 02:31 PM
... Glocks don't have hammers ...

Glock?

I'm missing a joke of some kind, ain't I.

thorazine
March 10, 2006, 02:52 PM
How does what you refer to work in terms of "gun store etiquete? Say you are at the range looking at some pistols and you wanna try a different one in your carry holster on a whim. I was at the store and did this. I asked the clerk if I could pull out my carry piece and try the new gun in my holster. He said no prob, so I carefully pulled the gun, always pointing in a safe direction, finger away from trigger, ejected the magazine, cleared the chambered round. Handed pistol to clerk so he could check the chamber. Satisfied, he put mine on the counter and I holstered the piece that was for sale.

Any problem with this? Even if it is OK with the clerk, is this a bad idea? What are people's takes on this?

Sounds perfectly fine with me. I have done it before and even asked for permission to rechamber. Done with extreme care and caution with "what direction is my muzzle pointing" in mind.

If I were another customer in the store I would probably watch you out of the corner of my eye. Satisified that you can handle your firearm safely I would put my focus back on what I was there for.

Guns are not demons. Demons sometimes use guns and people demonize the gun(s).

Nashmack
March 10, 2006, 03:03 PM
The way I clear my automatics is as follows:

Muzzle pointing in a safe direction and finger on the frame of the gun, I eject the mag, then pull the slide back 3 times and lock it back.

Does anyone find fault with this, or can anyone suggest a better way to clear the weapon?

thorazine
March 10, 2006, 03:07 PM
The way I clear my automatics is as follows:

Muzzle pointing in a safe direction and finger on the frame of the gun, I eject the mag, then pull the slide back 3 times and lock it back.

Does anyone find fault with this, or can anyone suggest a better way to clear the weapon?

Sounds perfect to me.

Only time I generally unload (or unchamber) my firearms is at the range.

Drop mag.
Eject chambered round.
Lock or draw back.
Visually and physically inspect (finger the chamber - ooohhh baby).
Slide foward.
Put on pants.

Process only takes a matter of seconds but it's worth it.

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