Have you come close to starting a forest fire?

Have you come close to starting a forest fire?

This is a discussion on Have you come close to starting a forest fire? within the General Firearm Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; While in the military I witnessed on two separate field ops where we unintentionally set the field or surrounding wooded area ablaze. Both times was ...

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Thread: Have you come close to starting a forest fire?

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    Senior Member Array 031131's Avatar
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    Have you come close to starting a forest fire?

    While in the military I witnessed on two separate field ops where we unintentionally set the field or surrounding wooded area ablaze. Both times was because of tracer rounds. Both times firefighters were able to quickly get out there and put it out. I don't think anymore than maybe a hundred meters or so ever burned. However because it seems to be common it is prepared for and range personnel prep the ranges for such an event so it obviously could be a lot worse.

    Has anyone else experienced this while using any tracers or what have you?

    Does the chance of such an event keep you from shooting anything?

    Recently I had a chance to buy 100 rds of 308 tracers for $50 and I passed remembering past experiences.


  2. #2
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    I haven't, but these guys know a thing or two about it!


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    Ex Member Array IndianaSig's Avatar
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    Nah, too humid here to start such a fire. I was in Colorado once, had to be about 1991, and it was drier than a popcorn fart. Every other commercial on the radio and TV was about what not do do. Signs everywhere. In places like that, they take such things very seriously. While forest fires are a good thing long-term for the area, they sure don't do much for we humans who have put our footprint on the area at the time.

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    Distinguished Member Array 5lima30ret's Avatar
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    Yes, many years ago I started one while on an aerial gunnery range (A-78) at Eglin AFB. The gun in question was a General Electric 7.62 Mini-gun on a UH1-N Huey. We notified range control who called the FD. It is amazing how fast fire spreads in palmettos and pine trees!
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    Member Array rogertc1's Avatar
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    No.....except on my grill.
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    I've avoided forests ever since I discovered flying monkeys lived there.
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    Senior Member Array WannabeaCPA's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Xader View Post
    I haven't, but these guys know a thing or two about it!

    For some reason the phrase "Hey y'all watch this!" came into my mind. Also the guy was very tacky about FPSRussia.

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    VIP Member Array ccw9mm's Avatar
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    None with shooting, no.
    Last edited by ccw9mm; August 17th, 2013 at 02:56 AM.
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    Member Array FLMOPE's Avatar
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    Nope but my cousin and I did burn down the grass field behind a dept store in the 60s.
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    Quote Originally Posted by 031131 View Post
    While in the military I witnessed on two separate field ops where we unintentionally set the field or surrounding wooded area ablaze. Both times was because of tracer rounds. Both times firefighters were able to quickly get out there and put it out. I don't think anymore than maybe a hundred meters or so ever burned. However because it seems to be common it is prepared for and range personnel prep the ranges for such an event so it obviously could be a lot worse.

    Has anyone else experienced this while using any tracers or what have you?

    Does the chance of such an event keep you from shooting anything?

    Recently I had a chance to buy 100 rds of 308 tracers for $50 and I passed remembering past experiences.
    When I was stationed at Carson during the mid '70's, we ran a range in our PCs firing fifties at targets along a canyon. We started brush fires about every time we did a run.
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    Distinguished Member Array Arborigine's Avatar
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    I have notice sparks when firing Tulammo steel jacketed at a gravel pit, and living in a forest that is not good. I wont be buying any more of that.
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  12. #12
    Distinguished Member Array Nmuskier's Avatar
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    Yes, we set a couple small grass fires with tracers. 5.56 and .50 BMG. Not forest fires, since live ammo training was done on a live fire range with defined lanes, limits, and a backstop, not in a generally wooded area. Even the .50 range has limits and a backstop (ridge line). Some trees or bushes, but mostly open fields of fire. Keep tracer fire close (dependent upon your mode of transportation), observe the area for at least 30 minutes after the last shot, and have fire control measures on hand.

    Signal flares will also set a fire. Some jack wagon popped a parachute flare for no good reason. Someone forgot to give him paragraph V of the OPORD.

    CA Governator Schwartzenegger banned shooting in some southern counties. Reason: rounds could hit a rock, spark, and start a wildfire. BS!!! I suppose a steel core round could hit a flint rock. Otherwise, those Hollywood types watch too much A-Team. It was a clear case of shooting control (they already had gun control and ammo control).

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    Member Array F350_6's Avatar
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    So are you 0311 or 0331?

    I stopped firing tracers when my uncle no longer bought them for me (0311). If you were 0331, I would suspect you have it out of your system by now anyway.

    There was an indoor range in Dallas that recently burned down from a patron firing tracer rounds inside. As dry as it is here, you won't find me shooting any tracers.

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    VIP Member Array Taurahe's Avatar
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    i caught my lawn on fire once..... i tried starting the burn barrel on fire with a bow and flaming arrow....... needles to say it didnt work as expected..... burned 3/4 of the lawn in less than 20 min. No more robinhood attempts for me. That was a tough one to explain.

    Oh and I watched a mortar team start a massive field fire at work a few months ago....... 80 mm HE mortars apparently are quite good at starting fires.
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    Out here in the parched desert, you have to be careful with steel-core ammo - ricochets are known to spark badly enough to start fires. I didn't give that much credence until I saw it happen... I was out on a cannon shoot (whole 'nother story there...) and while we were letting the howitzer cool off we were shooting at random junk on the hillside. Sure enough, we managed to set a junked mattress on fire, and it took a little doing to get that calmed down.

    A fair amount of public land open to shooting is declared off limits during the driest times, to minimize the risk of fire.

    My home range (Rio Salado) is home to a lot of big shoots. Show up for a match with steel-core ammo in your possession and you'll get a match DQ - that's how serious they are out here.
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