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View Full Version : Safety Assesment at STL Benchrest



piwo
04-28-2007, 11:03 AM
I belong to the Benchrest Rifle Club of St. Louis. http://www.shootingstl.com/ itís an institution that moved to the countryside after the Great Flood of '93 destroyed much of it and local politicians saw it as an opportunity to "remove" the embarrassment of a rifle club so close to town.

Our facility is world class and many world record scores over the years have been recorded there as well. It's home to national champion shooters who are members as well as some of the early legends of the sport of Benchrest. It's like that baseball field in the cornfield: a slice of heaven. :mrgreen:

We got a letter in the mail yesterday advising that our backstops are not up to recommended standards. Suburbia has closed in around our facility over the past 15 years and we have reports of 3 homeowners who say their homes have been struck with stray rounds. Nothing is more important then safety of course, and who could live with themselves if they injured another unnecessarily. Bottom line, each member will pay $200 by July 1 or have their keys deactivated.:( That there are those who are not responsible for each discharged round is even more disturbing. :twisted:

SWMBO is not happy of course and that's money I had designs on, but in the overall scheme of things it won't break the bank. Just had to vent... back to our regularly scheduled casting.
.........:Fire:

trooperdan
04-28-2007, 01:41 PM
What is the $200 fee for, improving the backstops? I assume that is a one-time charge or is that going to be an annual assessment?

I've heard of other ranges that had home-owners claiming bullet strikes but in at least one case the home-owner produced a complete, unfired round when asked for proof! :)

piwo
04-28-2007, 04:31 PM
What is the $200 fee for, improving the backstops? I assume that is a one-time charge or is that going to be an annual assessment?

I've heard of other ranges that had home-owners claiming bullet strikes but in at least one case the home-owner produced a complete, unfired round when asked for proof! :)

Yes, it is a one time assesement to raise all berms to exceed standards. There is great concern we are on the endangered list as the home builders are plowing DEEP into the country side to find cheap land and build BIG homes.. Not the starter types, the 220K+ on the low side homes. These folks got cash and don't like the 8:00 AM barage when benchrest match starts and 60 benchrest rifles fire all at once, and continue throughout the morning. We gun owners are under attack from all fronts, at all times anymore. :(

Scrounger
04-28-2007, 04:54 PM
Had to chuckle at your post, Piwo; in most parts of California, Nevada, and Arizona, $220,000 houses ARE starter types. When I moved here 4 years ago, you could buy a new tract home for $125,000 to $140, 000. Now they start in the "mid $200s" as they put it. I think I'll get an early start by buying a wheel barrow to haul enough money to the store for a loaf of bread. Gasoline? Only for the very rich.

Crash Corrigan
04-28-2007, 05:15 PM
We also had a camper claim that a .50 BMG round entered through his hood and ended up in his air cleaner atop his carb! They made a big deal of it and got the local TV station to air it. The police were summoned and they took the round into evidence. Their report (of course not aired on the TV station) indicated that the round had not been fired from a weapons as it lacked any markings from the barrel and that the report was bogus etc. This campgroud was 2 1/2 miles from the range but on that day no one was firing a .50 BMG at all. Yes the builders are enroaching on the land around us and I am sure that some day soon a "disturbed mom" will be lamenting the dangers in living 1 mile away from the range populated with "gun nuts and rambos". Amazing how people can buy a new house next to an existing "Danger" airport, pig farm or shooting range and now suddenly they realize that they made a bad decision and they want the "Danger" to go away. Get a life! Let's get a lawyer and we all can get rich. Try and get a hot cup of coffee at Mcdonald's. Try and get a decent trigger pull on a new firearm? They (lawyers & Politicians) are running our lives and we need to make some changes. :twisted: Sorry about the rant but no one listens to me anyway.
Dan (Crash) Corrigan (sleepless in Vegas)

mooman76
04-28-2007, 05:30 PM
Vegas has a similar problem. With the overwelming growth it is hard to find places to shoot espesially rifle. Most shooting clubs are maxed out and you can't join and the ones that are open aren't cheap and allot don't allow rifles. There is a skeet club north of town or at least it used to be. I never been there before but went to the park not too long ago and got excited when I heard the gun fire. Anyway it has a park on one side and the other 3 side houses now. I know these people have to be complaining but the club but it was there long before them. That's why I shoot in the desert and believe it or not most of the desert it is illegal to shoot except BLM land and they are trying to make that illegal in some places.
I work at a prison and it has a nice little range with targets up to 100y but they won't let us use it except to qualify twice a year and then they act surprized when people don't qualify. They have been talking about setting up something so we can practice but they have been "talking about it" since Moses was a child.
The state did aquire BLM land though to make a shooting range north of town and when it is done will be the largest public range in the country. You name it and they will have that kind of shooting and the fee if they told me correct was very reasonable $25 a person and $30 for a family per year. I'm thinking they will also charge a small amout each time you use it but we will see. I'm not crazy about public ranges though cause I never know who is shooting next to me and everyone has their own idea of saftey. I was thinking of volunteering and maybe I could get some bennies out of it.

PIWO It wouldn't surprize me a bit if the home owners that had the alledged bullet hits were due to their exageration or lack of gun knowledge. Growing up we used to shoot BB and pellet guns in the back yard. Yes it was illegal because we lived in town but we had a woods in the back yard and it was simpler times back then. Our neighbor after we had a falling out claimed we were putting dents in his aluminium siding but when he showed us the dents it was obvious it wasn't from our guns. It was more like a rock dent or something like that! Just my little rant.

Scrounger
04-28-2007, 06:48 PM
Mooman76, if I read your profile correctly, you live in North Las Vegas. When I lived there in the late 50s, early 60s, all I had to do was go out East Bonanza part of the way up Sunrise Mountain and turn south toward Stewart St. That was the dump area where I spent many hours plinking away. Continuing south took me into Stewart Ranch where they grew a surprising number of crops. All houses now, sad to say. Fortunately there is plenty of legal shooting areas here in Pahrump. Back to Las Vegas, aren't you aware of Desert Sportsmen's Club in Red Rock Canyon? In case you aren't, go west on Charleston, which becomes Hwy 159 and curves through Red Rock canyon. Less than a mile beyond the Red Rock Casino there is a very extensive range with targets to 600 yards. It is broken down into 10 or 12 sub ranges of different lengths and configurations. I am a member (3 years) but I haven't yet shot there becauuse it's 60 miles away from my house, it's too hot, or too cold, or too windy, or I'm too busy, or I'm just too lazy. So I don't know if they are open to the public on the weekends or not, but I think not. They do have 12 or 15 different shooting competitions every month and those are open to anyone who wants to compete. If there is a particular competition you are interested in, let me know and I will find out when it's happening for you. It has a locked gate and only members get the combination. Dues for old farts like me are only $50 a year, I don't recall what it is for younger people. Members can take in a guest of course. No additional fees for general shooting but each competition has an entry fee. Check it out, be glad to help in any way I can.

mooman76
04-28-2007, 07:15 PM
Scrounger

Thanks for the info. I know of them but have never mad it out there. Guess I like going out in the desert where I can shoot the way I want to shoot but it would be nice to have a club to go to. I go out north of town on 93 just befor the military range area and the prison. It has been getting worse and worse though. With the city growning so fast it is pushing more and more people out there and it seems to have turned into everyones dumping ground and I look to see BLM closing it off some day because of that.
A few of the people I work with go out to DS once a month to compete in their monthly consealed carry event( I forget the event name) they have. It is semi informal and I have yet to make it because it is on Saturday and with my work schedual, it is the only day I get to spend with my wife but I will make it some day. I have never been to into the cometition thing where shooting is concerned. I feel I have to be no better than myself but have found informal events allot of fun. I know about the too, hot, cold or windy thing although the latter is the one that I hate the most. Sometimes I feel I am just making excuses. They will be opening the first phase of that public range soon. Like I said nice price but that cheap a price will bring in all kinds of rif raff but hopefully it won't be too bad or at least for awhile. I heard they were going to have a Peace Officers only coarse and if that is true it will be nice.

Duckiller
04-28-2007, 07:41 PM
PIWO Beware. The San Gabriel Valley in So. Cal. had a shooting range since approx. 1947. Rich people that could hear gun shots at the range but not hear one of their neighbors get shot got the range closed recently. They got a not too bright city council (Azusa) on their side and rezoned the range. Also got a gravel company to cancel part of the range's lease. Object to every subdivision that is within 5 miles of your range. Let developers know that there is NO CHEAP PROPERTY near your range. What they don't spend on land they will have to spend on studies and court cases. Best of luck. I miss our our range. Duckiller

arkypete
04-28-2007, 08:30 PM
My range just went thru the 'use permit', zoning hearings and such.
Seems one of the Hanover Planning Commission types had an axe to grind and possibly a financial interest on our 430 acres.
We got it worked out for now.
We did have a lady get excited when she found a bullet in her yard but it had been there for a hundred plus years, twas a miniball.
Jim

Scrounger
04-28-2007, 09:09 PM
Duckiller, are you going to join West End now? That, Inland (Where Buckshot lirks), or Angeles are your only choices.

Uncle Grinch
04-28-2007, 10:24 PM
I belong to the Benchrest Rifle Club of St. Louis. http://www.shootingstl.com/ itís an institution that moved to the countryside after the Great Flood of '93 destroyed much of it and local politicians saw it as an opportunity to "remove" the embarrassment of a rifle club so close to town.

Our facility is world class and many world record scores over the years have been recorded there as well. It's home to national champion shooters who are members as well as some of the early legends of the sport of Benchrest. It's like that baseball field in the cornfield: a slice of heaven. :mrgreen:

We got a letter in the mail yesterday advising that our backstops are not up to recommended standards. Suburbia has closed in around our facility over the past 15 years and we have reports of 3 homeowners who say their homes have been struck with stray rounds. Nothing is more important then safety of course, and who could live with themselves if they injured another unnecessarily. Bottom line, each member will pay $200 by July 1 or have their keys deactivated.:( That there are those who are not responsible for each discharged round is even more disturbing. :twisted:

SWMBO is not happy of course and that's money I had designs on, but in the overall scheme of things it won't break the bank. Just had to vent... back to our regularly scheduled casting.
.........:Fire:

piwo,

Has your club checked out the assessment thjat the NRA offers for clubs. It is quite enlightning. Our club went through the initial informal stages of it and it opened our eyes to some vary extensive needs.

http://www.nrahq.org/shootingrange/technicalteam.asp

Lee
04-28-2007, 10:59 PM
It's just too bad that you can't enlighten the yuppies to the "safety assessments" that their beemers/volvos/lexis/gdsuvs' need. Those things kill upwards of 58,000 people per year.....Err I'M SORRY...IT'S NOT THE CARS THAT KILL PEOPLE, ITS THE PEOPLE IN THE CARS THAT KILL PEOPLE.......:twisted: ...............Lee:wink:

piwo
04-29-2007, 12:12 AM
piwo,

Has your club checked out the assessment thjat the NRA offers for clubs. It is quite enlightning. Our club went through the initial informal stages of it and it opened our eyes to some vary extensive needs.

http://www.nrahq.org/shootingrange/technicalteam.asp

The letter didn't say, but I believe they DID have the NRA out. They reference the data from the thorough "analysis" of all berms with some meeting minimum standards, some below standards, and at least one falling into the "incomplete" status. This is surprising givien the status of this organization in the Benchrest community. As I said earlier, I'm not angry over it, but when the club was moved we had a war chest of cash and this should have been done right up front. Now we're scrambling for bucks because of TONS of improvements that were made, and now have to retrofit something that should have been done up front.

Well, safety is safety and if the NRA (or the standards they provide) says we're deficient, then it MUST be done. Looks like I will probably miss out on a group buy I was planning on.....:(

Duckiller
04-29-2007, 01:37 AM
Scrounger, West end and Inland are a bit far. Burro Canyon up hwy 39 is gradually developing into a reasonable range. For major shoot-a-tons we rent a private range. If I am not working we shoot on Mondays, (gun store is closed). Weekends aren't too bad. Duckiller

Idaho Sharpshooter
04-29-2007, 11:23 PM
we have the same problems, even up here is SW Idaho. A "neighbor" had a rifle round go thru his picture window and called the county. Their forensics team came out and determined that the angle indicated it had come from his front yard. Fortunately, he had filed a complaint and hired a lawyer before hand. We got him a class A misdemeanor charge and two years probation. The other best story is the guy on the other side of the range who was cutting the wire fence and stealing gravel for his business. The fourth or fifth late night incident he flipped the dozer trying to outrun club members chasing him to the fence and is paralyzed from the chest down. My kind of Old Testament justice. I'm probably in my last yer of membership...going out on govt land that takes a good 4wd truck to get in.

Rich
DRSS

trooperdan
04-30-2007, 09:36 AM
Rich, I loved the ending about the complaint from the range "neighbor" that shot his own house! How sweet that was!

Junior1942
04-30-2007, 09:48 AM
I can shoot out of my front door if I want to. You guys need to move.

piwo
04-30-2007, 09:58 AM
Rich, I loved the ending about the complaint from the range "neighbor" that shot his own house! How sweet that was!

Yeah, that was a great story, and reading here it sounds like people are trying maliciously to put ranges put out of business everywhere. Problem is as I see it, unless you have local law enforcement willing to perform a thorough investigation, you will lose. Court of public opinion and outcry will get politicians to act. Soccer moms will decry that their mini-vans laden with kids must dodge bullets just to get into the house, etc, etc...

Just another thing to raise my blood pressure.........:(

uscra112
05-03-2007, 08:17 PM
I've got a similar story - well, two actually. One is the same thing as we've already seen - a homeowner faking a bullet strike on his home to try to shut down a privately owned commercial range here in MI. Fortunately police investigating also used that range for their own practice. It still took two years to clear the lawsuits.

The other is about the old Bridgehampton racetrack out on Long Island. (This is years ago.) Developers wanted to get their hands on the land, and among their schemes was "noise complaints". Some which were phoned in to the Bridgehampton police from numbers in Manhattan, on days when nobody was at the track.

Did I mention that I loathe developers? I do not doubt that the MI range story had a developer in it somewhere. The local zoning board got into the lawsuits, and being over 60 and having seen the elephant, I can attest that zoning boards are almost always controlled by developers. Did I mention that I loathe developers?

1Shirt
05-04-2007, 10:17 AM
Crash Corrigan and I would get along well! Then again, think I would get along well even with Junior, once we settled the liberal thing. Think he has to be a Harry Truman Democrat however, and if so that is ok by me!
1Shirt!:coffeecom

Junior1942
05-04-2007, 10:57 AM
I'm an Earl Long Democrat. I'm also a Yellow Dog Democrat which means I'd vote for a yellow dog before I'd vote for a Republican. . . .

Duckiller
05-04-2007, 12:15 PM
One of my grandfathers was like Junior. He was born at the beginning of the civil war. His father wore gray and was wounded at Chatanooga. In his part of Missouri, Quantrell's Raiders defined how you fought a war and Jesse James was just misunderstood. Anyway Grand father always voted, it was your duty as a citizen, until FDR ran for a third term. He just didn't feel well enough to vote on election day. Presidents only served two terms and when you are in your 80's you don't vote for a Republican for the first time. Be kind to Junior, he can't vote Republican, its genetic and the Democrats he votes for are not overly liberal.

Scrounger
05-04-2007, 12:37 PM
Good on you for the courage of your convictions, Junior. And no one can say you don't have every bit as much right to choose Democrats as some others here vote strict Republican. I try to choose the over all best person regardless of uniform. I kinda wish more people were like that.

Sundogg1911
05-04-2007, 02:53 PM
I can shoot from my back porch if I wanted to (Some of my neighbors do) but I don't that often, and without at least mentioning it to the neighbors first. My local gun club is only about 4 miles from my house. I can see the lights from the trap range from my deck. We have a three hundred yard range that requires a special stamp to use (It doesnt cost more, but they like to know who uses it) If you decided to shoot above the backstop you are shooting almost directly at a university. I'm very suprised that no one (yet) has tried to make them close it. It's a great range and i'd hate to see something like that happin. Most of the members are great people, but a few years ago there were some members that decided it would be fun to shoot the lights and wall in the indoor pistol range. Lucy for all of us they were caught and givin the boot. It's nice to have a range so close that when I get there and realize I forgot targets or something, I can be home and back in about 10 or 15 minutes.

chevyiron420
05-04-2007, 03:52 PM
i live in south georgia, neer valdosta, and you would think that ranges would be everywhere, but there not! i go to a range very neer the fla. line. they are real big into shotgun games and hunting. they have one range for rifles and pistols. there is a bench at 100 and another at 200 behind each other but slightly staggered. who ever is closer to the berm has control of the range! its 10 bucks a hour per person and there is no supervision. if someone come up with a pistol and walks right in front of you when your at the bench, you have to stop for saftey's sake! then wait or confront them. alot of people set up at about 15 yards from the berm and just shoot untill there out of ammo. they never stop to check targets, i guess groups arent important to them, so im there with a five round group on my target and wait for a hour or finaly get them to stop. i am realy thankfull that the range is there but wish it was run differently.--phil

Old Ironsights
05-04-2007, 03:55 PM
I'm an Earl Long Democrat. I'm also a Yellow Dog Democrat which means I'd vote for a yellow dog before I'd vote for a Republican. . . .

I need to get you to stop doing that and to at least vote Libertarian...

If you are going to waste a vote, at least waste it on a party that has consistant principles beyond taxes & social programs.

:wink:

waksupi
05-04-2007, 09:46 PM
Easy on the politics, guys.