Reminder: Treat EVERY Gun Like it's Loaded


mom of 3 angels

New member
ksl.com - Teen dies in prop pistol accident

Teen dies in prop pistol accident
November 15th, 2008 @ 11:59pm
(KSL News) A teenager died after he was injured by a blank-firing prop pistol at a St. George high school preparing for a play.

Captain Bruce Graham of the St. George Police Department said in a news release that Desert Hills High School in Bloomington Hills was preparing for the play "Oklahoma!" and setting up all the required props. Around 6:20, a loud noise was heard in the sound booth area above the stage.

Police say a 17-year-old boy apparently was holding a blank-firing prop pistol when it discharged. Graham told the Deseret News that even though prop pistols don't fire a projectile, they still emit energy.

The teen was taken to Dixie Regional Medical Center. The Spectrum reports he died while medical personnel prepared to airlift him to another hospital.

Police continue to investigate the incident. The school canceled the showing of the play after the accident occurred.
Two of my favorite things, theater and firearms. A tragic reminder that EVERY GUN IS ALWAYS LOADED.
 

tattedupboy

Thank God I'm alive!
I'm wondering who left the gun where the kid could easily accessible, and if that person (or persons) will be facing negligence charges.
 

mom of 3 angels

New member
Story update:

A 15-year-old St. George high school student is dead, killed by a gun used in a school musical. The gun was loaded with blanks, and was being used for sound effects.

Police say Tucker Thayer was setting up for the musical at Desert Hills High School when the gunshot rang out. He was found lying on the ground with severe head injuries.

Officers are still investigating how this happened. Thayer's parents didn't want to talk on camera, but they told us a real gun should not have been allowed in the school.

Thayer was part of the tech crew for the high school's production of "Oklahoma!" Friends say he was proud of his role.

"In fact, that's all he was talking about, that he was part of the production," Thayer's neighbor, Brett Jensen, said.

Thayer was by the stage Saturday night, preparing for the show. Police say other students nearby heard a loud bang, but no one saw what happened. Investigators say a gun, loaded with blanks, discharged.

"The gases, the pressure that it would build up, such a close proximity where the gun was pointed at the individual's head, caused the injury," explained St. George police Sgt. James Van Fleet.

Police say the school allowed the production crew to use the gun for sound effects during the musical. "It was determined that a responsible adult would be supervising the use of the weapon at all times," Van Fleet said.

Thayer's family says the teen knew a lot about guns. He was a certified range instructor for the Boy Scouts. But his parents don't think he knew the dangers of blanks.

"He had a heart of gold, and he would do anything for you; and if you asked him for help, he'd bend over backwards to get it done," Jensen said.

Police are investigating whether there was enough supervision.
 

toreskha

Titles are un-American.
Thayer's family says the teen knew a lot about guns. He was a certified range instructor for the Boy Scouts. But his parents don't think he knew the dangers of blanks.
It's details like this that confuse people and provide more fuel for the antis.

A good rule of thumb is if anything even looks like or functions like a gun - Airsoft, a blue gun, a crossbow, a flare gun, or a civil war cannon - to treat it like it's a loaded pistol with one in the pipe. There's far too many news reports about negligent shootings to not treat gun-shaped objects with the utmost respect, and it's a good example for everyone else.
 
My 4 year old isn't allowed to play with anything that resembles a gun. His "water guns" don't resemble firearms. He's got a banana, a boat, a camera and a rocket ship that "squirts" water. He's only 4 and knows that anything that "shoots" is "dangerous". He has a couple of very weak airsoft and suction cup dart guns. These guns are locked up in his own "gun safe" (Pelican case) and literally locked up (he has the key) when not in use.

It's very important to teach childern how to properly use firearms. One day his cousin left a realistic looking "toy" gun at our house. When he discovered the "gun", he immediately went looking for me and showed me where the "gun" was. (seems like the Eddie Eagle lessons worked). His aunty and uncle were shocked that he did exactly as he was supposed to. Once I rendered the toy gun "safe", he asked his cousin to put it away properly.

I wish more parents would take the time to teach their children how to handle firearms properly and with respect. I'm doing everything in my power to ensure that my son doesn't end up becoming a statistic. I hope his good habits rub off on his cousins.



gf
 

capo2186

New member
It is very important to teach children firearm safety at a young age.

I feel bad for this teenager, Prayers to him and his family.

On a side note,

I went to the range this weekend and was APAULD at this guy’s firearm safety. He was showing me his .22 caliber Ruger Mark II because I am interested in getting one. While he was showing me his firearm, the muzzle was pointed right at my gut. I asked the guy nicely to please point his muzzle downrange. His reply was "its unloaded I am out of ammo" my response was "I understand, however it doesn't matter, treat every firearm as if it were loaded". His face was priceless. I was shocked. Point being, firearm safety is a must.
 
G

gpbarth

Guest
I went to the range this weekend and was APAULD at this guy’s firearm safety. He was showing me his .22 caliber Ruger Mark II because I am interested in getting one. While he was showing me his firearm, the muzzle was pointed right at my gut. I asked the guy nicely to please point his muzzle downrange. His reply was "its unloaded I am out of ammo" my response was "I understand, however it doesn't matter, treat every firearm as if it were loaded". His face was priceless. I was shocked. Point being, firearm safety is a must.
One bad thing about so many new people getting firearms, a lot of them don't have any idea of proper handling. It would be nice if anyone who bought a gun had to at least fire a few rounds and be shown how to properly load and unload it. At least now, with all the carry permits being applied for, quite a few people will receive at least minimum instruction - hopefully! A friend recently sent me a YouTube video of what looked like a 12-year-old girl field-stripping an AR-15 - she broke it down and re-assembled it in less than a minute. Now there's a good daughter!
 

sambo42xa

USA Carry Supporter
One bad thing about so many new people getting firearms, a lot of them don't have any idea of proper handling. It would be nice if anyone who bought a gun had to at least fire a few rounds and be shown how to properly load and unload it. At least now, with all the carry permits being applied for, quite a few people will receive at least minimum instruction - hopefully!
That's why there are courses too take, starting off with..............Basic Gun.
capo2126, was this an Open To The Public range? From what You described, this person has no idea on "safety" whatso-ever. This person should have been reported to the proper official at the Range. And NO, You are not squealing on Him, but instead making the official aware that there are Some who do not know the first thing with a firearm........Safety! Don't get me wrong, I'm not saying the guy you mentioned is an idiot (well, Maybe he is), but You did your part telling him (educating) where the muzzel should be pointed and he could have just acknowledged His error, but instead comes back with " it's not loaded; I'm out of ammo" for an answer.....duuuhhhh McFly??!!!
The person in charge of prop's at the theater should have educated the person/s who was in direct contact with the weapon. As My sig. says........My opinion.........
 

capo2186

New member
That's why there are courses too take, starting off with..............Basic Gun.
capo2126, was this an Open To The Public range? From what You described, this person has no idea on "safety" whatso-ever. This person should have been reported to the proper official at the Range. And NO, You are not squealing on Him, but instead making the official aware that there are Some who do not know the first thing with a firearm........Safety! Don't get me wrong, I'm not saying the guy you mentioned is an idiot (well, Maybe he is), but You did your part telling him (educating) where the muzzel should be pointed and he could have just acknowledged His error, but instead comes back with " it's not loaded; I'm out of ammo" for an answer.....duuuhhhh McFly??!!!
The person in charge of prop's at the theater should have educated the person/s who was in direct contact with the weapon. As My sig. says........My opinion.........
This range is not open to the public. Members only. This was a much older gentleman than I who has been shooting a long time (from what he told me). He is a member at the club. I didn't say anything to the range officer, I wish I did. He said "it’s unloaded" but still; do not point your firearm at me. Whenever I load, un-load, put away, take out, handle, touch, anything to my firearms at the range, my muzzle is always pointed down range. I value safety more than anything with firearms. I hate the accidents that occur that injure or kill someone as well as hurt our hobby because someone was carless. If you are a responsible firearm owner, you are less likely to have something negligible happen. My opinion.
 

toreskha

Titles are un-American.
This range is not open to the public. Members only. This was a much older gentleman than I who has been shooting a long time (from what he told me). He is a member at the club. I didn't say anything to the range officer, I wish I did. He said "it’s unloaded" but still; do not point your firearm at me. Whenever I load, un-load, put away, take out, handle, touch, anything to my firearms at the range, my muzzle is always pointed down range. I value safety more than anything with firearms. I hate the accidents that occur that injure or kill someone as well as hurt our hobby because someone was carless. If you are a responsible firearm owner, you are less likely to have something negligible happen. My opinion.
Saying "it's unloaded" doesn't heal gunshot wounds caused by gross negligence. This guy would know better if he had gotten anything out of his years of practice.
 
I don't care how much "experience" anyone claims to have. If they do someting that can result in serious injury and/or death, I'm gonna say someting to them about it. If they give me attitude, I'm gonna let someone know about it as well (RSO, club board members, etc.) If I happen to be the RSO and they give me attitude, then they're done shooting for the day because I'm kicking them off of my range! :nono: Don't get me wrong, I'm not like the "Soup Nazi" from the t.v. sitcom "Seinfield" or anything like that. If a person is new to shooting and/or makes an honest mistake, I'm cool about "tactfully" correcting them. The ones who do get kicked off the range are the ones who need to be reminded multiple times or have a very bad attitude when spoken to. Most folks will say something like "Oops, I didn't realize the muzzle pointed that way", or "I'm sorry, I won't do it again". I had one guy call me "son", and went on a ramble about how he was some retired officer in the British Navy :confused: and that he had been shooting since before I was a "little squirt", etc. He got his one and only "warning" about keeping the muzzle down range. The second time, he flagged another shooter at which point I told him to place the pistol on the bench. His response is "[explitive] you! It's not loaded, there's no clip in the weapon." I grabbed the HK USP 45 out of his hand and cleared it. He nearly messed his pants when he saw the live round eject from the chamber! :eek: I put the gun on the bench and told him "Now it's unloaded. Please gather your things and kindly leave the firing line." After turning several shades of red (I thought the guy was gonna go off on me. He was probably more embarrassed than mad at that point.) he put his stuff away and proceeded to leave the range. On the way out, he apologized for his mistake.

He was back on the range a few weeks later with a much better attitude as well as improved firearms handling skills.

In my NRA firearms classes, the philosophy is to teach the Knowledge Skills and Attitude to safely handle and operate firearms. Knowledge and Skills can be improved by additional training. If the student/person on the range has a bad attitude, there's nothing I can do about it other than to ask them to leave the range. Like "toreskha" said, "it's unloaded" doesn't heal gunshot wounds and neither does "I'm sorry." Can't recall a shot once the trigger is pulled. I don't mind hurting feelings (personally I think it's impossible to hurt another person's feelings) if it will potentially save someone from getting seriously injured or killed.



gf
 

Husky Girl

New member
I really like the idea of your child having his own "gun safe." What an interesting way to teach kids about firearms safety. Can you explain a little more about how you introduced him to guns and taught him about the dangers?

I'm curious because I've always been a little unsure about how to teach my kids how serious gun safety is. I don't have any kids yet, but I know that when I do there will be guns in the house.
 

Husky Girl

New member
It would be nice if anyone who bought a gun had to at least fire a few rounds and be shown how to properly load and unload it.
Be careful - that sounds suspiciously like gun control. Next thing you know, we'll be requireing that people take safety courses and buy gun safes.
 
Be careful - that sounds suspiciously like gun control. Next thing you know, we'll be requireing that people take safety courses and buy gun safes.
I fully support folks being required to take some sort of safety course if they will be carrying the firearm. If they want to own one for personal protection in the home, the that's fine. I just don't want some "mall ninja" thinking they're some sort of super hero with a gun and injure themself or others due to not knowing how to properly use the firearm.



gf
 
I really like the idea of your child having his own "gun safe." What an interesting way to teach kids about firearms safety. Can you explain a little more about how you introduced him to guns and taught him about the dangers?

I'm curious because I've always been a little unsure about how to teach my kids how serious gun safety is. I don't have any kids yet, but I know that when I do there will be guns in the house.

When my son was 18 months old, he first noticed my holsterd gun after I got home from a day of hunting. I explained what it was and offered the generic explanation "I use it to catch pigs for dinner". He accepted that explanation and somehow remembered it. One day just after his 2nd birthday, I took him with me to my military unit when I went to pick up some paperwork. He saw one of the Security Police Officers in uniform and noticed his sidearm. Knowing that the officer was "daddy's friend", he walked up to the officer and asked him if he used the sidearm to "catch pigs". My buddy, not knowing what he was taliking about (and not being around children himself) said something like "No, perps shoot at us pigs, I use this to catch perps." My son asked me what a "perp" was. When we got home, I explained what a "perp" or "bad guy" was and explained that police officers are sometimes called "pigs" by bad guys. He seemed to understand and he asked "You're not a bad guy right?" I assured him that I was a "good guy" and that I catch "bad guys". Around the time he turned 3 years old, he was playing with water guns with his cousins. I told him that he wasn't allowed to play with the "guns", but he could play with the other things like the banana, boat or camera that shot water. He asked "why?" and I asked him "Are your cousins bad guys?" He shook his head and said "No, I don't want to shoot my cousins" (remembering what the pig looked like when I brought it home from the field). A few days later we were in a toy store and he saw an inexpensive airsoft gun that resembeled my G 23. He asked if he could have it, and I agreed but cautioned him that he would have to treat it like daddy treats his guns. He agreed, so I bough him the airsoft pistol. I set up targets for him and taught him about "safe direction" and proper firearms handling. When we wer done, I had him put the airsof gun away in his own "safe" (one of my old Pelican cases without the foam). I had it set up next to daddy's gun safe, so he knows where the guns should go. He locked it up with his lock and keys and daddy secured the other lock point with a cable tie (in case he has any ideas). The deal is that he can use the gun only when an adult gives him permission. He goes "shooting" with his airsoft a couple times each week. His "ammo" gets stored in an ammo can that I gave him (it's painted to his liking so it won't get confused with daddy's stuff).

A couple of months after his 4th birthday he asked if he could go shooting with me. I consulted a bunch of other NRA instructors I teach with. The main concerns were "can he safely handle the pistol" (pointed down range, etc) and "can he pull the trigger". I cleared my G 23 and set up a safe area in my home see if he could pull the trigger. I demonstrated, then had him try. After some minor corrections, he was able to pull the trigger and remember "safe direction". After several pulls of the trigger (forgot to take out the NY trigger spring) :blink: I was convinced that he would be able to safely handle the firearm (under close supervision of course). A week later we had an instructor meeting and a "free range" day following the meeting. He had fun shooting the steel pig and steel duck targets. I had him shooting my G 23 with my Advantage Arms .22 conversion kit. Even with the 8 lb trigger pull, he had no problem. After shooting 100 rounds or so, he told me he was done shooting, and told me that he wanted to watch me shoot. I had him sit in his folding chair and he enjoyed watching me shoot 100 rounds or so and especially enjoyed when I missed the target. :haha:

When we see someting on televison we discuss what's going on. Sometimes he'll ask me about it, other times I'll bring it up. Most of the time he has the correct answer. :biggrin: He's asking to go to the range again. We've got another meeting in mid December. It should be fun.



gf
 

wifeypooandmom

New member
That is an awesome job. Just posted about my lil guy 5, no concept as hard as we try. I think a gun case might help him understand.
 

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