From the Cop and Soldier side: My best friend had a little problem whilst at a civilain range a few weeks ago. Private ranges are sometimes the worst place to shoot---depending on the locals.
I think the first time I helped run a weapons range, I was about 19 years old--in the US Army, in West Germany. I was taught by my Army Sergeants that if you’re running the range, you have to make sure that every knucklehead on the range understands what it really means to be SAFE. They trained me to watch for the nervous shooters, and they really taught me to watch out for the shooters who thought they knew everything. They were the most dangerous because they had a tendency to not really listen to what you were telling them about safety.
Over the years, I came up with my own ways to run a range and ways to give a safety briefing that made sense to even the dumbest shooters. A typical Army range safety briefing might sound like this:
“ Keep your actions open and your weapons pointed up and down range. Follow all commands from the tower.”
Well, maybe somebody like a cook who has to qualify, has forgotten what all of that means. (not to pick on cooks, but what the hell, to be honest, they are almost always a problem on weapons ranges. What can I say? ...and as for some of the Army cooks cooking, I'd rather eat an MRE.)
So, when I run a weapons range, I tell those helping me to watch for those who might do the wrong thing…but usually after MY briefing, nobody does anything bad. This was usually told with my very loud outside voice.
“Listen up! This is my range today. I don’t care what rank you are, if you fuck up on my range, I WILL throw your ass off. There are 3 basic rules on my range!"
1.) You will be safe- if you shoot anybody on this range, one of my assistance or myself will kill you. If you wound anybody, we will wound YOU. Is that clear?
2.) You WILL qualify on my range. If you can’t fucking shoot, tell me now and we will work with you before you go on line and waste ammo and our time. Is there anybody here who has never fired a (what ever weapon we’re using that day)? Don’t be shy…we’ll be able to tell in just a few minutes. If you speak up now, I will help you and I guarantee YOU will qualify, unless you are totally retarded.
3.) You WILL have fun on my range. Hell, you are getting paid to be here. You are getting free ammo and you are getting some of the best instructors in the world for FREE. Enjoy it.
The last times I ran the pistol range for my Army National Guard unit, I had 100 % of the those who had to qualify, qualify. And nobody has ever been injured on my ranges...and most people come up to me after the range and tell me that they actually had FUN.