Live fire drills with people on the range?!?

Discussion in 'Strategies, Tactics, and Training' started by silicosys4, Aug 26, 2022.

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  1. hso

    hso Moderator Staff Member

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    An insanely dangerous "thing".
     
  2. coloradokevin

    coloradokevin Member

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    Live fire training for military and police units *can* be conducted in a number of ways that are quite different than what the average civilian will encounter on the firing line at the local gun club. Some of that training just comes down to the need to properly prepare for the type of mission these professionals are going to face. Naturally, some of these drills are inherently more hazardous than the typical "square range" setup at any given gun club, but those inherent hazards shouldn't be confused with the training being conducted in a haphazard manner.

    I've been in training in live-fire 360 degree shoot houses on a number of occasions, where we were practicing room domination and room clearance tactics with small units. Some of those shoot house scenarios did create situations where another human was technically downrange of the shooter, but they also had rules of engagement that included things like not engaging shoot targets if you had a live person within three feet of it.

    Now, we never intentionally set things up with the goal of placing a person next to a target before shooting that target, but the tactics used in these room clearances would sometimes bring live people into a generally "down range" position relative to the person firing shots. That's why we had the 3 foot safety margin rule. These drills were also very closely supervised by experienced RO's, and they were conducted by experienced professionals who: 1) had prior familiarity with the tactics being used, 2) were trained specifically for shoot house safety protocols, 3) ran the drills "dry" before running them with live ammo, and 4) had to prove proficiency through an on-range qualification course immediately prior to participating in the shoot house drills.

    By contrast, it sounds like the military friend you're speaking of here is doing some kind of ridiculous nonsense he probably saw in a YouTube video, or he's simply making up his own training program that doesn't directly line up with the training he actually received in the service. And, sometimes people do come up with ridiculous and unproven training ideas they believe are appropriate to share with their buddies. One childhood friend of mine is convinced you should train without hearing protection, because you won't "get scared" of the loud gunfire noise in a gunfight. That idea is a guaranteed way to suffer hearing damage over time, and science and history has already shown us that in a real life gunfight the participants often experience an "auditory exclusion" response where they don't even perceive the sound of the gunfire as it is taking place.

    You do you, but I'm not planning to go hug a target while my buddy shoots it.
     
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  3. Kleanbore

    Kleanbore Moderator Staff Member

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    "I have a friend who was...." "He has stated..."

    Not a lot to go on here.
     
  4. jmorris

    jmorris Member

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    Insane? Nuttier than squirrel turds.

    https://www.wearethemighty.com/popular/insane-russian-special-forces-training/
     
    Last edited: Aug 28, 2022
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  5. MikeInOr

    MikeInOr Member

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    If a range officer saw this you would be politely asked to leave as soon as he retrieves his boot out of your ass.

    As messy as it would likely be I would volunteer to help him tug it out of there.
     
    Last edited: Aug 28, 2022
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  6. scaatylobo

    scaatylobo Member

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    Yes I have seen a few videos and I was sickened at them.

    Taught firearms to police officers as an LEO.

    And NEVER would I go down range with ANY loaded guns in any hands !!

    If you feel the need to try such training,then you NEED to get simunitions or soft air guns.

    At least all you will suffer are a few WELL DESERVED WELTS.

    But do wear eye protection = and maybe a cup.
     
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  7. bearcreek

    bearcreek Member

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    You're the only one here (I assume) who knows what kind of experience your buddy has. "Combat veteran" in itself, doesn't really mean anything. That could range from once hearing a few mortar impacts 500 yards away to a CAG operator with 20 combat deployments. I'll let you guess which one I'd be confident in receiving training from and conducting "down range" drills with.
     
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  8. silicosys4

    silicosys4 Member

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    He's got enough experience kicking down doors in desert areas that i didn't dismiss his methods outright.
     
  9. Craig_VA
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    Craig_VA Contributing Member

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    According to the comments on YouTube, the instructor who sent up this travesty is James Yeager.
    His bio on the linked page leads me to suspect he is a bit shaky.
    I now have the first name on my no freakin' way I would train with this instructor list.
     
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  10. Jeff White

    Jeff White Moderator Staff Member

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    This training is not conducted the way everyone thinks it is. It's planned with safety in mind and conducted with a lot of safety measures in place. No one just goes downrange and stands by a target. It may surprise those who have never served but the Army has put people downrange while other people were shooting forever. Way back in 1974 when I went through BCT (Basic Combat Training) everyone went through IMT (individual movement techniques) training. The final training event for that block was the live fire IMT lane. A pair of soldiers maneuvered on a machine gun nest a couple hundred meters downrange. There was a propane operated machine gun simulator in the machine gun position and two "F" silhouette targets on knock down target mechanisms. The soldiers started 20 or 30 meters apart and advanced on the machine gun position, one firing while the other moved. The machine gun simulator stopped firing when you knocked one of the silhouettes down. The team maneuvered to hand grenade range and threw a practice grenade into the machine gun position. This was run with blanks a couple times before live fire. An instructor followed the soldiers through the lane to make sure they didn't point weapons at each other. These were the newest soldiers in the Army and the only experience they had was Basic Rifle Marksmanship. And this was for all soldiers of all MOS. It wasn't in Infantry AIT.

    There are plenty of other training exercises that place soldiers downrange while other soldiers are shooting in the same direction. You have to remember that we do this in combat. There are control measures in place to prevent fratricide in both offensive and defensive operations and you have to train on those measure. These exercises are meticulously planned, the safety measures are usually briefed and approved two levels up the chain of command.

    This is not, "Hey Joe, go stand by that target while we shoot the target." It's planned, briefed and approved. The training event has to meet the standards in appropriate regulations, if it's conducted on an installation it not only has to be approved by the chain of command but also by range control. The safety officers are assigned, briefed, trained and certified. Yes boys and girls you don't just get tapped on the shoulder and told you're safety NCO today. There is formal training and certification and the battalion and range control keep a list of safety certified officers and NCOs. The exercise is run dry (no ammunition) with blanks and finally with live ammunition. You only get to live fire after you've ran it dry and with blanks until you can do it safely. We liked to use MILES during the blank fire runs so we could tell who was getting shot by their buddy.

    This is not a bunch of guys at the local range doing something stupid.
     
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  11. Craig_VA
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    Craig_VA Contributing Member

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    I was not reacting to the tactical training discussion, but to the video showing a photographer between the targets during live fire.
    I agree there are tactical team training activities that are way beyond what any civilian should be training for. If you , as a non-LEO, non-military, want to play those games, go to the tacticool equivalent of fantasy baseball camp doing spring training.
     
  12. old lady new shooter

    old lady new shooter Member

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    Thanks for this, I was waiting to see what you would say. :)
     
  13. bearcreek

    bearcreek Member

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    What do you think a civilian "should be training for"?
     
  14. Craig_VA
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    Craig_VA Contributing Member

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    Marksmanship for competition, self defense, home defense, legal aspects of self defense (Law of Self Defense), interaction with law enforcement, and possibly active shooter reaction (especially if on a school or church security team).
    What civilians do not need are tactical team activities like clearing rooms, and assaulting facilities. Squad tactics are not what we civilians need, even if it may be fun. I have no problem with folks taking those team tactics course for challenge and fun, but consider them fun extras, as opposed to defense skills need.
     
    Last edited: Aug 28, 2022
  15. bearcreek

    bearcreek Member

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    I see. I believe the 2A's primary purpose is to maintain the ability of the people to defend themselves against tyranny. You disagree, I presume?
     
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  16. Jeff White

    Jeff White Moderator Staff Member

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    Before we go too far down this rabbit hole I'd like to remind everyone that more then half of the states have Paramilitary Training laws that criminalize civilians conducting that type of training and there are a couple of provisions in the USA Patriot Act that could make it a federal crime should the US attorney see it as such. It's a very gray area.
     
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  17. FL-NC

    FL-NC Member

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    Jeff hit the nail on the head in post 36. People in the military train to shoot while friendlies are "downrange" We do it in combat. In any known patrolling formation, unit members are in front of one another- with the enemy contact possibly coming from any direction. Sometimes team members are downrange of friendly machineguns, mortars, or artillery. Even air delivered ordinance may be in play. It is done at varying levels of intensity depending on the unit, its mission, experience level of troops, and so on. I would assume that live fire with small arms with friendlies "downrange" is practiced to some level of basic proficiency in the LE community- if it isn't it really should be, because there are countless scenarios when it could become necessary to do so- and not just for the kitted up "special" LE types. This is obvious if you only consider the existing best practices and preferred tactics for LE arriving at an active shooter type event, or umpteen other possible situations. If you are working with 1 or more team members on anything other than a 2 dimensional flat range with a firing line, at some point 1 or more team members are going to be "downrange" in relation to other team members, not to mention non-hostiles in the mix. Things can go "live and loud" at any time. Without a background of some type firing in proximity to non-hostiles, it is very likely that the individual will revert back to his/her own level of training /comfort level and put themselves into a "cease fire" status, since what is happening doesn't compute with actual experiences. People rarely "rise to the occasion" in these situations- they will often freeze/shut down or make horrible decisions when "overcome by events". I know, since I have seen it. At that particular time and place, a "safety cease fire" may not be the best tactical decision, so prior realistic training can't be understated.
    The MOST important thing to understand is that this level of proficiency needs to be achieved over time within a team. Combat is chaos- even if it is just a 1-1 boxing match. The trick is jumping into it but maintaining control and having awareness of what is happening in this dynamic environment. Seeing videos of SOF units in a live fire exercise, a random gunfight in the desert or an urban area, or even inside of structures during a raid may look like a free-for-all with a bunch of tasmanian devils with guns- but that appearance is very misleading, and it takes a lot of time on the range and in an infinite number of live fire exercises -AS A TEAM- to be able to pull this off.
     
  18. shafter

    shafter Member

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    What FL-FC said is spot on. You will do in a fight what you do in practice at the range.

    I'd also like to point out that one of the cardinal rules of gun safety is to never point your firearm at anything or anyone you don't wish to shoot. Someone can be downrange of you without this rule being violated. The key is to have enough lateral separation so that a small movement to the left or right doesn't put you directly in someone's line of fire before they can appropriately react. This is advanced level training, it's not for beginners or even intermediates, however it is a safe and legitimate way for certain drills to be conducted for real world scenarios.
     
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  19. edwardware

    edwardware Member

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    If you think that's scary, imagine being expected to make the same downrange movement, in the same proximity to your partner's line of fire, while accurately operating your weapon, and under enemy fire incoming from further downrange.

    Sounds like a bounding approach under fire, relatively conventional tactics in a firefight. If you expect to be able to do it under fire, you need to train for it.

    Square unidirectional range tactics are really very unrealistic for combat.
     
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  20. Craig_VA
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    Craig_VA Contributing Member

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    Not at all. What leads you to infer such in my personal philosophy?
     
  21. jmorris

    jmorris Member

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    Glad they didn’t set us of fire when we learned, “stop, drop and roll.” :)
     
  22. Kleanbore

    Kleanbore Moderator Staff Member

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    This kind of training is not appropriate for civilians, and it is therefore not within our scope.
     
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