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 By Mike Coviello (Tanner)
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Fire At The Shooting Range

Gun Powder Burning At The Shooting Range - I was shooting at the range yesterday when I looked over to my right (about 25 feet down range) and saw a fire burning beneath another shooter's target. The fire was on bare concrete and there was nothing visible burning. It was a thin line (or ribbon) of fire about 6 feet long and 2-3 feet tall. It just magically appeared. Nobody was around it.

 Gun Powder On Range Floor
Caught Fire

It was interesting. We watched it a moment. It would grow, flicker, get longer, bigger and shorter but always remained in a straight line. I notified the rangemaster and brought out a fire extinguisher and put it out.

As it turned out, bits of unburned gunpowder are expelled from the muzzle of the guns when fired, and what is not carried away by the range air conditioning system falls to the range floor. When the floor is swept, some of the gunpowder falls into the expansion cracks of the concrete. Over time it accumulates in the cracks.

They said that a shooter's bullet must have hit the crack in the concrete just right and caused the gun powder to ignite. The line of gun power burned and started slowly traveling down the crack. The rangemaster said it had happened before. That was interesting and there was no danger.  

 

Another Fire At The Shooting Range

UPDATE: August 26, 2011

Had another fire at the range. This one was bigger than the last one and shut down things for about 20 minutes. We watched them put out the fire on the range floor through the windows from the hallway. Interesting show.

In the hallway of the range, when the fire was burning two guys were talking. According to the guy who presumably fired the shot that started the fire, he said he did not hit the floor with a bullet. The guy next to him said he saw fire coming out he muzzle of his gun (which is natural).

The more I think about it the more likely I think that it may be hot GSR (guns shot residue) that may have started the fire instead of a bullet or ricochet. The muzzle of a gun spits out hot burned and unburned powder along with miscellaneous particles. Possibly some of these hot particles fell on the floor, came into contact with the gunpowder in the cement cracks and started the fire.

 

 

Authored By Mike Coviello (Tanner)

 

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