Man mistaken for a target and shot at Gunsite

This is a discussion on Man mistaken for a target and shot at Gunsite within the Defensive Carry & Tactical Training forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; A 50-year-old man was mistaken for a target and accidentally shot during an exercise at a firearm-training facility in northern Arizona, authorities said. The Florida ...

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Thread: Man mistaken for a target and shot at Gunsite

  1. #1
    Member Array Bandolero's Avatar
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    Man mistaken for a target and shot at Gunsite

    A 50-year-old man was mistaken for a target and accidentally shot during an exercise at a firearm-training facility in northern Arizona, authorities said.


    The Florida man was training with three of his colleagues Sunday at the Gunsite Academy in Paulden, which is about 30 miles north of Prescott, the Yavapai County Sheriff's Office said Thursday.


    The man was standing on a catwalk as his colleague fired at targets. The colleague saw the black silhouette of the man and fired, shooting the man in the abdomen, officials said.


    Instructors administered first aid before he was flown to a local hospital for treatment and surgery. On Thursday, he was listed in good condition.

    Trainees had been told not to shoot in the area of the catwalk. No charges were expected against the shooter.

    http://blogs.phoenixnewtimes.com/val...s_to_his_s.php

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  3. #2
    Member Array Blownsvt's Avatar
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    wow.
    I LOVE ME SOME HK's!

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  4. #3
    Member Array mamakennedy's Avatar
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    I have never been to Gunsite, but it seems odd to allow anyone down range during a live fire exercise. Anyone know how they have that area set up???
    Laws that forbid the carrying of arms . . . disarm only those who are neither inclined nor determined to commit crimes . . . Such laws... serve rather to encourage than to prevent homicides, for an unarmed man may be attacked with greater confidence than an armed man - Cesare Beccaria

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    Member Array tawcat's Avatar
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    And deer wear hunter orange vests!!!!!

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    VIP Member Array ccw9mm's Avatar
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    Lack of control, combined with potentially poor design of the "risk" areas. I think it's pretty clear it could be nothing else. What happened ain't rocket science.

    Any decently configured shooting range should not have any areas in which people are physically able to stand, walk or exist in front of the shooting line/area, at any time during active shooting drills (which pretty much means for the duration of any day-long course).

    If anyone is going to be allowed in such an area, it should be authorized personnel only, and it should only be allowed in coordination with the R.O.'s to ensure that nobody is on the range with active ammo at the times people are in those risky areas.

    Obviously, merely suggesting that people shouldn't shoot that-a-way isn't good enough. Gunsite has had a long reputation for being competent enough to avoid stupidities such as this.

    It's the same with greasing the tracks at the carnival roller coaster, or doing the brake job on the tractor/trailer. You don't go doing those things until you've ensured people aren't using the equipment. Same with a range, and with people being anywhere near the active shooting areas while risk zones are populated.
    Your best weapon is your brain. Don't leave home without it.
    Thoughts: Justifiable self defense (A.O.J.).
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  7. #6
    Senior Member Array HK Dan's Avatar
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    What makes y'all think he was in front of the shooter? They're supposed to look around after the shot, right? Before we get critical of the school, let's learn the details. How many thousands of shooters have gone through there without incident?

    I'm no particular fan of Frontsight, but I do believe that they balance the risk/reward part of our training responsibly and professionally.

    Sorry to hear that someone was hurt, but glad to hear that he's doing well.

    Dan
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    1, it was Gunsite, not Front Sight...

    2, the shootee was on a catwalk, according to the article. This leads me to believe, based on my experiences through lots of shoothouses with catwalks on them, is that he (the shootee) was ABOVE the shooter. It's common practice to have a series of catwalks above a live fire shoothouse so that instructors and observers can watch the "action" down below from a position of relative safety. Note, here, that these are not square "ranges" as such, but 360 degree training areas where people enter and clear buildings and rooms - there is no "down range" or no-shoot area in most shoothouses, except of course the catwalk areas up above.

    Apparently in this case the shooter went outside of his "lane" and engaged the shootee - first time I've ever heard of this happening in ANY of the shooting schools/shoothouses in the country...
    A man fires a rifle for many years, and he goes to war. And afterward he turns the rifle in at the armory, and he believes he's finished with the rifle. But no matter what else he might do with his hands - love a woman, build a house, change his son's diaper - his hands remember the rifle.

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    VIP Member Array ccw9mm's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HK Dan View Post
    What makes y'all think he was in front of the shooter?
    The mere fact the shooter could see the target meant it was in front of him, which is all I was indicating. Which direction that is isn't known without a map of the range and position of the people involved.
    Your best weapon is your brain. Don't leave home without it.
    Thoughts: Justifiable self defense (A.O.J.).
    Explain: How does disarming victims reduce the number of victims?
    Reason over Force: The Gun is Civilization (Marko Kloos).
    NRA, SAF, GOA, OFF, ACLDN.

  10. #9
    Member Array DIXIETWISTER's Avatar
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    Not good.
    You may not like guns. You may choose not to own one. That is your right.
    You might not believe in God. That is your choice.
    However, if someone breaks into your home at 3AM the first two things you are going to do are:
    1) Call someone with a gun.
    2)Pray they get there in time." - A wise man

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    Someone is getting a coupon for free courses, a new car, a new house, and extra spending money...

    Someone else is getting demoted...

    Completely avoidable...
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    OPFOR is correct. Please dont think in terms of square ranges. The shoothouse is a 360 degree target engagment area.
    The catwalks are in place above the rooms of the shoothouse so instructors or observers can see what the shooter or team is doing without cluttering up the stack coming in.
    The catwalks are placed well above the rooms so the observer is well above and out of the way of any normal firing. It sounds like possibly a high speed facility and low speed shooter who in the heat of the moment made a tragic mistake.
    "A first rate man with a third rate gun is far better than the other way around". The gun is a tool, you are the craftsman that makes it work. There are those who say "if I had to do it, I could" yet they never go out and train to do it. Don't let stupid be your mindset. Harryball 2013

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    VIP Member Array SIGguy229's Avatar
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    Is it me, or is this the first time something like this has happened there..? If so, this is one incident in how many thousands of students?....Still a pretty good track record...
    Magazine <> clip - know the difference

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  14. #13
    Member Array Realfriend's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bandolero View Post
    Instructors administered first aid before he was flown to a local hospital for treatment and surgery. On Thursday, he was listed in good condition.
    How good can you be after getting shot? Anyone have an idea what kind of recovery and long term effects he is in for?

  15. #14
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    This gives a little more information.

    Buz Mills, Republican candidate for governor, praised his staff at the Gunsite Academy in Paulden, Arizona on Thursday for helping the victim of Sunday's shooting mishap.

    "We are relieved this client is in good condition thanks to the swift actions of our staff at Gunsite and the dedicated paramedics at the Central Yavapai Fire District," Mills wrote in a statement sent to New Times by his campaign staff.

    Sunday's wounding of a 50-year-old man from Florida was reportedly the first such shooting accident since the business opened in 1976.

    On the average, that seems like a decent track record for the 2,000-acre facility north of Prescott. But we're still concerned, after reading the Yavapai County Sheriff's Office account, that someone was "downrange," providing an accidental target for the shooter.

    We called Ed Head, the facility's operation manager, to help us understand what happened.
    Image: www.gunsite.com


    Head tells us the accident happened in a "live-fire tactical simulator -- call it a shoot-house, if you will."

    The shoot-house is a large building for indoor shooting exercises with a catwalk around the perimeter for observers "for for controlling large military groups," he says.

    While the victim stood on the catwalk, one of his colleagues inside the building mistook his silhouette for a target and fired. The victim was struck in the abdomen with a frangible bullet made to crumble apart and avoid ricochets.

    An instructor was conducting one-on-one training with the shooter, but "sometimes people do things before you can stop them," Head explains.

    The shooter, who isn't expected to be charged, had been told he wasn't supposed to shoot up toward the catwalk.

    "People are thoroughly briefed" about the rules of the shoot-house, Head says. He doesn't think the building or those kind of exercises are dangerous, noting that this was the first accident the place has ever had.

    Gunsite staff provided first aid until paramedics with the Central Yavapai Fire Department showed up. The victim was said to be in good condition on Thursday.
    "A first rate man with a third rate gun is far better than the other way around". The gun is a tool, you are the craftsman that makes it work. There are those who say "if I had to do it, I could" yet they never go out and train to do it. Don't let stupid be your mindset. Harryball 2013

  16. #15
    Member Array 120mm's Avatar
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    Yep, there IS a use for frangible pistol ammo. When you absolutely, positively don't want to kill someone. Or have a ricochet.

    There should be a lesson there....

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