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Hit with ricochet today at the firing range

Discussion in 'General Gun Discussions' started by 9mm+, Mar 12, 2010.

  1. 9mm+

    9mm+ Well-Known Member

    I went to my local range (seven-lane, 25yd, indoor) in Raleigh today to get some more practice in with the Springfield XD40. I had an uneasy feeling when I walked in and every lane was taken by rapid-firing cowboys whose targets looked more like a Swiss-cheese Rorschach drawing than a true target. I went to lane #4 and started to hang my target when I felt a sharp pain in my right chest. I looked down and pinned against my shirt was a nicely flattened lead bullet. I peeled it off my shirt like you would peel off a sticker.

    The real pain didn't set in until a few minutes later and after lifting up my shirt, I noticed that I had a large red welt where the bullet had struck (like getting hit with a golf ball if you've ever had the misfortune of being hit by one).

    The RSO on this range consists of the cashier monitoring the cameras from outside the range, which roughly translates to no RSO at all. Although it was impossible to pin down where the bullet came from, I suspect that one of the cowboys shot the floor or ceiling and the bullet ultimately found its way back to my chest. Thankfully, most of the energy had been dissipated before it found me.

    I promptly packed up my gear and left. I doubt I will ever return to this range. There is no way to prevent all accidents, of course, but in no way should six VERY bad shooters be allowed to rapid fire like that.

    Lesson learned: Trust your instincts. I had a bad feeling when I walked into the range and saw who the other shooters were. I should have listened to that little voice in my head saying to walk away...just walk away...
    Last edited: Mar 12, 2010
  2. ny32182

    ny32182 Well-Known Member

    If it was symmetrically flattened, I doubt it was from the floor or ceiling.
  3. 9mm+

    9mm+ Well-Known Member

    Not symmetrical at all (very elongated on one side) but very flat indeed.
  4. tackstrp

    tackstrp Well-Known Member

    found a 45 acp at least 245 grain misshapened at my feet, was flaten on two sides and on a little banged up on the nose. Looks like it did some sliding across something. Range person said no one here shooting that size bullet. Well i spept my area and pick up my brass and between sweepings it appeared. Duh.

    any way, glad you did not get seriously hurt.
  5. hso

    hso Moderator Staff Member

    An excellent example of why protective glasses are needed when shooting and why heeding that "little voice" is always a good idea.
  6. The Bushmaster

    The Bushmaster Well-Known Member

    Strange. Most, if not all, indoor ranges don't allow rapid firing just for that reason. I agree. I wouldn't go back either. In fact I would have made sure the managment knew what happened and why you didn't plan on returning.
  7. 9mm+

    9mm+ Well-Known Member

    @tack and hso -- yep, definitely learned from this one. I was lucky.
    @Bushmaster -- I don't think the employees have a clue what goes on in the range. Best bet is to find another indoor range where safety is stressed and shoot there instead.
  8. rooter

    rooter member

    I've been hit by a ricochet that penetrated the skin superficially. Not a big deal, picked it out of my arm and kept on shooting. I guess that is a risk we take when shooting at an indoor range. Wear safety glasses and shoot on.
  9. gordy

    gordy Well-Known Member

    I find it strange that you were able to see that the six very bad shooters,were truly bad shooters. Or just using rapid fire. It sounds to me that you just walked in and this happened right away. This type of thing could have happened with six very good shooters or just one. We can be glad that you were not injured more than a lump. You could have been killed.
    This is one of those wrong place- wrong time things. Hard to blame anyone here.
    I was hit myself and it put a hole the size of a marble in my upper chest. Inch deep,Hurt like you would not beleave. And the shooter was my brother.
  10. Gouranga

    Gouranga Well-Known Member

    Wow. Thank God that thing was not going faster. The indoor range near me has no tolerance for rapid fire. I imagine for just that reason. That being said though, they DO rent FA's but they use a totally different section JUST for them. I'd say head to my range but it is about 2 - 3 hours south of you.
  11. Zack

    Zack member

    This is why I think gun ranges and the law should let you wear/own a bullet proof vest. Bad things happen. Glad you are ok
  12. 9mm+

    9mm+ Well-Known Member

    Not sure if I follow you, Gordy. The evidence of the bad shooting were the targets as stated in the original post. Yes, wrong place, wrong time, but a great deal of mishaps can be mitigated. Not completely eliminated, but mitigated.
  13. 9mm+

    9mm+ Well-Known Member

    @Gouranga and Zach -- thanks! I may check that out...much appreciated.
  14. dacavasi

    dacavasi Well-Known Member

    I find it interesting how widely varied the range operating procedures are from one range to the next. There are some ranges here in central TX that have absolutely zero RSO oversight and you are left to your own devices or more appropriately, "shoot at your own risk". Then there are others which are highly regulated by professionals and for which you first have to attend orientation and safety overview meetings prior to using. I am in strong favor of the latter and only go to the lesser-monitored ranges during the midweek when I know that I'll basically have the place to myself. I don't believe that ricochets should ever be an issue at a well designed range which is being utilized correctly and on which safety is a main priority.
  15. Lonestar49

    Lonestar49 Well-Known Member

    It's your week to play..


    I think it's your week to play the Lottery's..

    Possible effect of a bullet hitting one of the deflectors in front of the clips that ya hang your target on..

    I've seen a few that were hit by something BIG and flattened the V front end.

    Adding "the chance" of another bullet hitting in that exact spot and it would absorb enough of the force (thru give/sway) then returning into your chest without any worse effects is the final thought on why I think you should play the Lottery's this week.. ;)

    Luck is a wonderful thing.. (and you have/had it)


    Ps.. 10% commission would be the_kind..
  16. 9mm+

    9mm+ Well-Known Member

    @dacavasi -- I couldn't agree more!
  17. 9mm+

    9mm+ Well-Known Member

    LOL, Lonestar! :) I think I will fill my lotto card out today!
  18. joejoeshooter

    joejoeshooter Well-Known Member

    Happened to me at GUN CITY in Nashville TN a couple of years ago...

    They acted like it was the first time it ever happened. I found that they have a serious ricochet problem...I've not been there since. And my office is only about a mile from them.

    Just wanted to get their name out there again!

  19. gordy

    gordy Well-Known Member

    I must say that I didn't understand that the targets were a true target and not a drawing(my bad) I use home made targets sometimes. I don't shoot indoors to much as the club I belong to has a outdoor range. Sucks in the cold. As you refered to the guys as rapid-fire cowboys I was mislead to beleave that you were bashing the peaple and there shooting style. Not there ability to hit the target.:)
  20. 9mm+

    9mm+ Well-Known Member

    Ah, Gordy, gotcha! :) No worries!

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