Is shooting a safe sport?

Number of Polish people interested in shooting and guns is constantly growing. They have a place to train, as in past few years, the number of shooting ranges measurably grew, and new government program: “shooting range in every county” is on the go, therefore further increasing the number of such objects. Shooting sports are also popular amongst teenagers, who are happily enroll to sport clubs and are choosing related schools, which are teaching them in similar matter.

Such trend may be unnerving for a bunch of people and therefore there are arguments that shooting is a dangerous sport, and growing popularity of shooting ranges will increase the accidents involving firearms. Is it true? Let’s study the facts.

How accidents occur on the shooting ranges?
Indeed, social media are constantly feeding us with information about dangerous situations on the shooting range, with death accident amongst them. However, it is worth looking at the cause of such accidents. More often than not, when dangerous accident happens on the shooting range it derives from breaking the rules of given place or safety rules when it comes to weapon handling. Accidents happen usually when gun is improperly carried and also when someone is manipulating it without a clear permission from instructor. Another type of dangerous situations involves planned actions. There are few cases of murder, such as death of greatest USA sniper- Chris Kyle. Such tragedies does not, however, mean that shooting is a dangerous sport. 

How to keep your shooting range as a safe place?
The very fundamental rule of safety is to obey the rules of the given place. Most of them are using so-called exemplary regulations, given by authorities, which are always worth knowing. When visiting shooting range we are obliged to obey every single one of those points. It is worth knowing that in case of breaking those rules we are almost always immediately removed from the object. Listening to every order of the instructor is another important thing. In case of people under his jurisdiction, every weapon related activities and shooting never starts without him specifically commanding it. That means, that when command: “STOP” is declared, everyone is obliged to end his activities. Even if we think that it’s safe, instructor must have a specific reason to hold on the action. It is also worth remembering, that instructor may be not noticing the danger – if we are having doubts or we see something strange, we should immediately notify him. 

Rules which should be remembered
One of the most important rule, which should be obeyed by everyone using firearms is: always treat your weapon as if it was loaded and ready to fire. What does it mean? This rule means that, for example, you should not aim at other people, animals or objects – in other words, weapon should be pointed only at something you can safely shoot at. You mustn’t look inside the barrel or manipulate your weapon that way. It is strictly forbidden to do jokes with weapons, for example pointing it at other people, even to make a cool photo. For such kind of behavior, you may be removed from the shooting range. It is also important to keep your weapon holstered or carry it in the special case. It should be drawn and loaded only on the shooting station.