Is it accidental or negligent discharge?


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PATH
January 5, 2003, 02:01 AM
The gun goes boom when it is not supposed togo boom. What is it? Accidental or negligent?:confused:

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Schuey2002
January 5, 2003, 02:04 AM
Little of both, "I reckon"....:D

P95Carry
January 5, 2003, 02:15 AM
IMO ..... leaving aside the most quirky of situations ...... NEGLIGENCE'' ... every time.

If the prime rules are followed then ''accidents'' should not and cannot happen. Porter Glockmans relating of a sad incident two days ago highlighted this .... a forensic (I think) or ballistics guy who shot himslef with a rifle. In the same thread was a case too of a young female cop who removed her pistol mag and ''forgot'' the round in the chamber ... she lived I believe thank heaven.

Bottom line ... any and every gun is loaded .... until proven otherwise .. twice if possible.

Furthermore NEVER point a gun at any time at something you don't want to hit!!

Standard good practice should negate ''accidents'' .... negligence will always be the root cause.

Kahr carrier
January 5, 2003, 02:17 AM
Negligent - Number one rule all firearms are loaded even if they arent.:)

dave
January 5, 2003, 02:22 AM
If a gun goes off, on it's own, without the trigger being pulled, it's an accident.

If a gun goes off after the trigger is pulled, even if it wasn't meant to be pulled, it's a negligent discharge.

PlayTheAces
January 5, 2003, 02:29 AM
With guns, I would have to say negligent around 99% of the time. An accident would be an event truly out of your control. If you analyze the root cause of any accident, most could have been prevented. Naturally there are exceptions....

P95Carry
January 5, 2003, 02:31 AM
If a gun goes off, on it's own, without the trigger being pulled, it's an accident. Short of a real freaky parts failure Dave . i'd still say ''negligence'' ... because of poor maintainance!!

Blackhawk
January 5, 2003, 02:37 AM
dave's got it close enough.

I'd put it that if the gun fires without a person handling it, it's an accident. For example, a cocked shotgun leaning against a tree or car falls over and fires, or a dog steps on a cocked gun lying on the ground and it fires, or storing a Glock in the broiler section of a gas oven, forgetting about it, and then turning the broiler on causing a round to cook off. All are accidents.

If a human is handling it when it fires, it's negligent. For example, when putting a Glock into the old style cases with the trigger protrusion and it fires or attempting to disassemble a gun for cleaning and it fires. Both are negligent.

P95Carry
January 5, 2003, 02:55 AM
I'd still take issue there Blackhawk ........ quite simply, the shotgun leaning cocked against tree .... asking for trouble . even if no human hand nearby ...... it is an unsafe practice.!

I mean, a loaded and cocked firearm .. whether in human hands or not ... is an ''accident'' waiting to happen .. but caused thru negligence IMO. It's that simple.

And .... Glock on broiler section??!! Really ... still no ''accident'' because anyone in right mind should ''see ahead'' to the potential for disaster ... it still comes down to negligence ...... by the owner of said firearm.

Stupidity = negligence ...... and can cost lives.

Psssniper
January 5, 2003, 03:13 AM
Negligent=Human factor

Accident=no human factor

Blackhawk
January 5, 2003, 03:21 AM
P95Carry, if you run Murphy's Law out, ALL accidents have a negligence component. An "accident waiting to happen" isn't an accident, it's just an unsafe situation somebody with knowledge and foresight can recognize.

Murphy just restated the law of unintended consequences and said, quite rightly, that ANY condition not properly considered that can lead to an unforseen consequence of a pernicious nature will happen. He was an engineer, and astutely made his observation, which unfortunately is not given the serioius due it deserves.

Negligence has degrees. If a person is aware that a dangerous situation exists yet does not act appropriately to ameloriate the potential harmful consequences, the foreseen event is due to negligence.

If there was no awareness beforehand, it is an accident.

Something that may be attributable to me as negligence may well be only an accident for somebody else. The criterion is awareness of the potential consequences. So, I suppose a gun firing when an untrained child gets ahold of it is an accident attributable to the negligence of somebody else. If that's you, and you're 4 states away at the time, would you say YOU had a negligent discharge? No. You'd have to say the child had an accidental discharge.

ZekeLuvs1911
January 5, 2003, 03:23 AM
I would say negligent 95% of the time. I have had firearms for over 12 years now and only once....this year...had a gun needed to be sent in for a repair that if left alone, could cause the gun to fire.

WonderNine
January 5, 2003, 03:25 AM
Porter Glockmans relating of a sad incident two days ago highlighted this .... a forensic (I think) or ballistics guy who shot himslef with a rifle.

Yes, but we don't really know the true circumstances of that. He could have checked the rifle, left the room, someone came in and loaded it, he came back looked at the barrel for something and BOOM!. Foul play in other words.

Or maybe he knew it was loaded, but the trigger snagged on something or the sear failed as he was moving it. The point is, you never know unless you were there.

lilbiggun
January 5, 2003, 06:42 AM
I also agree. Negligent all the way.
There is no way a gun can go off without a human factor involved. ND's can be accidental but lets put blame where its due. The owner or handler was negligent at the time.

GD
January 5, 2003, 08:18 AM
It is all perspective.
I'm at the firing range ready to shoot and a person throws something at me. I suffer an accidental discharge caused by his negligence. Unless you are a liberal, guns don't just jump up and go boom.
Yes, there are defective firearms, but it is your responsibility to check out your firearm before firing it.
Accidental discharge means simply that you did not intend for it to discharge. Negligence is just putting blame for who caused the discharge. This is similar to any accident, say a car accident. I'm still going to call them car accidents not car negligents and I'm still going to call them accidental discharges in the case of firearms.
:neener:

P95Carry
January 5, 2003, 12:28 PM
Blackhawk ....... OK - I was getting a tad pedantic!! I do agree there has to be some leeway for accident . Murphy got it right in some ways! :) I'm not trying to make waves too much!
So, I suppose a gun firing when an untrained child gets ahold of it is an accident attributable to the negligence of somebody else. If that's you, and you're 4 states away at the time, would you say YOU had a negligent discharge? Aha tho ...... allow me one more pedantic moment!! No, sure ...... not ME having an AD .. but re the culpability factor (which may or may not be seen as negligence) ..... if the weapon was unsecured/loaded .. whatever, such that said child COULD get hands on it and create potential mayhem ..... who is responsible? I would be, even if several states away. Simply because I should have taken pains to not be negligent with my safety proceedures etc.

Anyways ... many cases are open to interpretation ...... and I wasn't trying to get into a pi$$ing match!! Sorry if it seemed so. Just that overall it has struck me over many years how the majority of firearms accidents (incidents?) ... did track back to someone's negligence/carelessness .. call it what you will.

The other example given here that was probably a classic accident, per se ... was the scenario where a guy is shooting and some object outa nowhere hits him and he fires involuntarily ... now that would be true accident because cause totally unforeseen probably.

Blackhawk
January 5, 2003, 02:52 PM
P95Carry, yeah, that's just it.

The elements of an AD or ND are that a gun goes off, and somebody's there with the gun. If it was foreseeable, it's negligent, thus an ND. If it wasn't foreseeble, it's an AD.

If there's nobody in the area or vicinity of the gun, like maybe a squirrel getting in through the sunroof of your SUV where you locked up your loaded and ready to fire guns and it manages to fire one while grubbing around for something to eat, I wouldn't classify that as either an AD or ND simply because I think the terms should apply to a human being DIRECTLY involved.

Anyway, I believe that an overwhelming percentage of inadvertent discharges of firearms are NDs, and the relatively few ADs there are involve negligence by somebody else.

This hasn't been any kind of pi$$ing contest. It's been an informative discussion, and I've sorted a few things out as a result.

P95Carry
January 5, 2003, 03:03 PM
like maybe a squirrel getting in through the sunroof of your SUV where you locked up your loaded and ready to fire guns and it manages to fire one while grubbing around for something to eat hahahaha! :D :D :D That made my day!

Blackhawk
January 5, 2003, 03:14 PM
One of the funniest and best animal documentaries I've seen was one a few years ago where some Brits filmed squirrels figuring out ways to get food put out in bird feeders. No matter what elaborate measures the humans took so the birds could get the food but the squirrels couldn't were defeated by the squirrels.

Triad
January 5, 2003, 03:25 PM
Balckhawk, I saw that too. You really have to respect the little critters, don't you? Back on topic, I think you nailed it. If it was foreseeable, it's negligent, thus an ND. If it wasn't foreseeble, it's an AD.

4v50 Gary
January 5, 2003, 03:35 PM
PSSsniper says it all.

Double Naught Spy
January 5, 2003, 10:24 PM
By pssniper's definition, there really are no 'accidents' with guns. Generally, an 'accident' is when there is a discharge without some form of direct human handling of the arm that results in an unintentional discharge, such as by having a finger on the trigger when it happens or some other mishandling of a loaded firearm. This is negligence by the operator. If there is a mechanical problem that results in the discharge, it is considered 'accidental' in regard to the operator, but such really are not 'accidents.'

That being said, mechanical failures that result in the unintentional discharge of the arm are also going to be human-related in some form. For example, the Rem 700 rifle has been plagued by unintentional discharges while trying to remove live rounds from the chamber. This apparently is a design flaw. As such, it is a human-caused problem. Metal may fail under circumstances where it should not and result in a discharge. That failure of the metal would be due to improper forging or casting and then a failure to identify the problem metal in quality control checks. Other types of malfunctions may be due to improper maintenance or modification that result in a discharge.

It is this sort of reasoning that is applied to airliner crashes. Design flaws, improper maintenance, or pilot error all end up being tied to some form of human cause. In real life, there are few such 'accidents' in the grand scheme.

cratz2
January 5, 2003, 10:28 PM
99% of the time, negligence is involved.

2nd Amendment
January 5, 2003, 11:30 PM
Legal definition of "negligence": NEGLIGENCE - The failure to use reasonable care. The doing of something which a reasonably prudent person would not do, or the failure to do something which a reasonably prudent person would do under like circumstances. A departure from what an ordinary reasonable member of the community would do in the same community.

The only time it has ever happened to me I cleared the gun. Another person clearly saw me clear it and check it. When I squeezed the trigger it fired. Somehow a rnd that I had no idea was in the chamber stayed there even after racking the slide, locking it, looking in, with the muzzle up. To this day I'm not certain how it could have happened but I can't see it fitting "negligence". Short of sticking my finger in there I'm not certain what else I could have done. OTOH I don't think "accident" applies very well, either.

mjustice
January 5, 2003, 11:33 PM
I agree with PSSSniper and Dave. You generally cannot call it negligent unless there is some "human" involvement.

MJ

lilbiggun
January 6, 2003, 01:09 AM
This post kinda makes me wonder. If a weapon discharges when it aint supposed to, Human involvment is always there. period. Weapons dont grow rounds in there chamber. Now if you were out drunk fooling around with your gun and it goes off thats obviously negligent (as I'm sure we will all agree on). If your an honest gun owner who follows all the rules the best you can and you have a discharge, could that maybe be complacency? Think about it, you do the same thing every time with no problems all of a sudden BAM. of course its not your fault, you've been doing it for X amount of years the same way, or were you lucky? or doing it wrong? Do discharges happen, you bet they do, lets just learn from it. Guns do not just go off for no reason. Lets reterm it accidental negligent discharge.

Blackhawk
January 6, 2003, 01:54 AM
Lets reterm it accidental negligent discharge.But the acronym would be AND, and we'd get a bunch of "Who's on First?" type jokes not to mention the "Ever had an AND?" questions followed by "AND WHAT...?!" responses.

Shouldn't it be NAD anyway? No, then there would be a bunch of "NAD? What's that?" questions.

NDs and ADs are distinguishable, however, so sticking with the two acronyms might be the best thing after all.... :D

RoyRapoport
January 6, 2003, 05:39 AM
Speaking of animals and guns, here's my girlfriend's dog in Alaska:

http://www.ruthieandkasten.com/images/kastenportfolio/113-1383_IMG.jpg

Rusty
January 6, 2003, 08:58 AM
Yesterday a buddy handed me a 10/22. He had removed the mag and pulled the bolt back before handing it to me. I then checked to make sure the mag was out and pulled the bolt 3/4 of the way back and looked up into the action. I then tried the trigger and the gun fired! I couldn't believe it. I have handled guns daily since I was 10 and I'm almost 40 and had one other NG ever. I don't know if the extractor is not extracting or what, but it was a free lesson in pull the bolt back and then LOOK INTO THE EMPTY CHAMBER TO MAKE SURE!
Another story. I was at a gun shop and the guns are lined in a rack on the wall. You can just walk up to them and get one you want to look at. I picked up a cool Winchester 1890 and roboticly pumped it to make sure it was empty and a live round popped out! I like to have freaked. Then another round came out of the magazine and chambered. This gun was sitting there available to anyone.
Never trust. Double check. And still never piont that thing at anyone no matter what.
I kept thinking about the 10/22 incident when I was going to sleep last night and was thanking the Lord the round just flew into a wooden fence. A lot of lives can change in one second.

TallPine
January 6, 2003, 10:26 AM
My definition:

AD: gun fires when you weren't intending it to but you were following all safety rules so no harm done (example: de-cocking a single action, hammer slips from thumb and bullet goes into the ground)

ND: any other case

Betty
January 6, 2003, 11:01 AM
RoyRapoport, Great photo! :D


I had a "combo" ND/AD once - AD on the part of one person and ND on the part of another. The AD: I chambered a Ruger MK 1 and the firearm discharged. The pistol was pointed at the ground with my finger safely on the side of the frame as usual.

Why was it also an ND? The owner of the pistol said afterwards, "I've never cleaned that gun in years and years." The neglect resulted in gunk sticking around the firing pin area, as my brother discovered later when he disassembled his friend's pistol. The pistol was in horrible shape inside. The firing pin was most likely protruding after the last time it was fired, resulting in my slam fire.

The guy had the nerve to look at me and say, "What did you just do to my gun?" :rolleyes:

What did I learn? Don't assume everybody maintains their firearms as well as you do.

HS/LD
January 6, 2003, 11:11 AM
If the trigger is activated by a person while not on target it is a NEGLIGENT DISCHARGE. If the gun is dropped and fires it is a NEGLIGENT DISCHARGE.

If there is a mechanical failure and the gun fires without the trigger being touched it is an ACCIDENTAL DISCHARGE.

I had an MP5 "cook off" once I fired one three round burst out of a 30 round mag and 'zip' 27 others followed with out my permission.
NEGLIGENT as the operator, I let the gun get way too hot.

Regards,
HS/LD

dd-b
January 6, 2003, 12:33 PM
Nearly always negligent -- the only time it's not negligent is if the weapon is defective and there's no reasonable way the owner could have seen early symptoms of the problem. I'm sure there's something that can go wrong suddenly and without prior symptoms in some gun design somewhere.

Sometimes the negligence isn't primarily on the part of the person holding the gun at the time -- particularly when training a new shooter, it's the responsibility of the trainer to prevent ND, since the new shooter can't be expected to know enough to be safe at the beginning. (Primary method -- keep ammo well away until the shooter does know enough to be safe.)

bogie
January 6, 2003, 02:35 PM
Some of 'em oughta be called "idiotic" discharges...

As for cooking off - Odds are it got hot or dirty enough that some internal parts no longer meshed correctly. It takes a little while, even in a HOT barrel, for a round to cook off.

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