Hairy Experience

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Having just come off camp and being part of the prt, I would like to share with you a couple of 'close encounters' that the range safety had.

Firstly two riflemen next to each other engaging a target to the front, one changes his mag, barrel of SA80 points slightly left and he fires!! The LIVE round crashes through the flash eliminator of the weapon of the man next to him. This was followed immediatley by a strong smell of sh1t.

Second incident - fire team attack on a bunker up hill. Left hand pair get dropped on bun line to give covering fire as second pair move in to assault the bunker.
As second pair enter the arcs of the left hand pair, left hand pair need to switch target away from assaulting pair. One of the firers switches target ONTO the assaulting pair. Luckily safety staff saw it and shouted STOP before the tw@t pulled the trigger onto his oppo's!!

Anyone else had any hairy experiences?


wow, I bet that shook you up. Have you managed to get back behind the wheel since?
How did the dog take it? Did his life flash before his eyes?


War Hero
This is a third hand story at least but I was told about an OTC girl being taught to throw live grenades.  The girl and the corporal in charge of the range were standing in the slit trench and the corporal was going through the instructions step by step, told the girl to throw the grenade and she obliged, by chucking it straight up, so that a couple of seconds later the grenade landed back in the trench.. The corporal moved with the speed of a thousand gazelles, but the girl didn't, the corporal grabbed the back of her web belt and throws her overarm out of the trench...  Another second later the greade goes off in the trench.


War Hero
A door slammed today in the office.  It was very loud!

No, seriously...  Range stuff can scare the bejeesus out of anyone, so Snipes' experience was pretty lucky.  One of my chaps was shot by another near Sarajevo a few years ago.  That was not altogether funny.
One or two spring to mind:

1.  Recruit throws grenade.  Grenade goes vertically (1 sec), watched in horror by RCO and Safety Supervisor.  Grenade descends vertically (2 sec) and strikes recruit on helmet (3 sec, he is still looking out into the gravelled area wondering where his grenade has gone) and bounces....forward....over the blast wall (4 sec going on 20,000 years).  Safety Supervisor, who has been waiting to see which way to run - er, drag recruit to safety - has just enough presence of mind to grab recruit and drag him down as his knees give way....

2.  LSW gunner turns to me and says "I've been engaging that orange thing as a switch target but it's started moving".  Luckily the Safety Supervisor in the orange vest was not hurt, not a ringing endorsement for the LSW (or the gunner) though....

3.  Firing rapid into a trench as ordered, I see a hand clutching an L2 grenade appear into my SUSAT field of view.  Hand drops grenade into trench and withdraws.  I stop firing (this was pre Safety Supervisors having to wear day-glo vests, but also pre body armour)....

4.  LLAD range with GPMG.  Chief Instructor drives his landrover out of the range danger area as streams of tracer arc overhead.....

I could go on, but mostly Stage 5 rangework is pretty uneventful ;)!

Mr Happy

Not sooooo interesting but I remember being told to switch fire "onto that sheep over there!", "the one in the middle of the flock?" says I, "yes" says the RSO, A gimpy can really do some damage to a group of enemy sheep I can assure you.

Impact area Thetford, GPMG SF role opens up on bush, first burst sails high, the bush and the one next to it jump up and exits right sharpish - have you ever seen  a bush wearing a bergen doing 20 mph?  It is quite an interesting site.  Snipers from the same Bn in case you were interested....

Training for BNSAAM, FNG in prone position/Fire Trench shooting APWT or whatever it was back when SLR's ruled the earth on an ETR and in rests between exposures he lights up a fag and puffs away, placing fag on ground and picking rifle back up to shoot...  Not enough safety staff methinks...

Oooh ooh and this one happened to me!  Section lined up behind a bun line facing wood line, rounds up, safeties off looking for tgts when who should walk straight through my sites at 150m distance, Plt HQ.....  That's what I call a leap-frog!
Happy go lucky hill walkers walking in danger area for a brigade live fire ex - mor, milan, SF - oh to have seen their faces at the reaction of the RSM ::)

Sheep had a rough time of it an all...... ;D
I pulled me knob off on the ranges once,
Live firing section attack. First trench taken by section comd and Charlie fire team. Depth position seen !!! ;D

Delta move forward intimate fire support laid down, myself as a newly promoted LCpl  8) crawl forward with a grenadier   ??? to take out the trench.  Thunder-flash primed and posted into the trench; grenadier on full automatic jumps up at the speed of a thousand gazelles shoots the crap out of the pop up target machine and whilst running past keeps firing in an arc starting at waist level going though 6 o’clock and ending up facing back down the range at the rest of the section with a 5.56mm ventilation hole in his left foot. :eek:

Surprisingly kept hold of my tape  8) , although not for much longer (that’s another story)  :'( but the lad got invalided out of the Army. Last I heard he was working on a paint ball site in Petersfield.


didn't happen to me, but on the same battle range that SB was officiating on, some years ago, not sure how true story is, but was told , by CS concerned.

Colour Sergeant was walking through doing the safety thing, targets popping up, Squaddie under supervision had a reputation for being a wee bit warry. As they progress, there's the usual whirr and clang, this time the target is BEHIND the squaddie. The CS swears blind, that the only thing that saved his life, was seeing the squaddies left shoulder drop as he dived right......


Again - don't know how true this is as I wasn't told the story by the person who it had allegedly happened to, I heard it third hand.

One of our boys was in NI some years ago and was in his vehicle with window open. When all of a sudden he was staring down the barrel of a gun/pistol (not sure which). It was held by a player and what saved his life was the fact that he pushed his thumb behind the trigger so the guy couldn't pull it back.

Quite heroic if you ask me.
During NI training with one our Regiments based in the North.

A serial is executed where a player opens fire on a patrol then runs away. The escape is planned so the player is caught.

Two young squaddies get hold of the guy place him face down on the ground and shoot him in the back of the head (using blank ammo), causing a little burning. The OPTAG team shout stop and everybody closes in.

The poor lads expecting a heroes praise for his great act. When asked what he was up to, he just said simple said "killing the terrorist."

Apparently he had got confused on his Rules of Engagement card. Due to a crease on his card he had missed read the phrase Capture OR Kill the terrorist and though it had said Capture AND Kill.

Could have been one less O’Shea.
Practising car drills using pistols a few years back.  At end of serial, myself and safety instructor were 10-15 ft ahead of the other bod and his safety.  Shortly after the command "make safe" had been given, I seem to recall a loud bang, swiftly followed by a small patch of dirt exploding just in front of the pair of us.  I learned that day that farts can indeed be lumpy.

Not sure which is more scary mind.  The actual incident itself, or the frequency of how often similar incidents occur.  I know from personal experience that range staff cannot watch everything at once, but is it that safety standards are too lax, or are our drills simply pap?   ???


In my case, as safety, is was the fact that the lads were very hyped up and were not paying enough attention to their drills. We don't get the chance to play with real bullets that often and I think some lads were being overly cautious but at the risk of not carrying out drills properly.
I once saw a 'shimouli' used as a LAW-simulator!.  It was fired horizontally at a Pantech van.  It nearly burned to death the fat CQMS who was sleeping in the back .  :eek:

Boy, did I laugh!  ;D

Foggy will back me up on this one.


A few years back we were on the ranges doing pairs fire and manoeuvre, section fire and manoeuvre and live advance to contact.  Fine you may think but when the pop up target 'pops up' one of the guys in the next lane rather than running forward into cover runs backwards.  Making the range supervisor a little worried before he jumps on him and holds him on the ground.  Lest say I wasn't worried but the supervisor certainly was!!
HVM boy, One of those rare instances where you think, this is actually quite serious......but laugh your wee man off anyway!!  (I know, it's all fun and games until somebody loses an eye yaddy-diddy-ya)  What wasn't funny mind was the lunatic with the shermulley went biccies ten minutes later due to "over-enthusiastic" use of automatic fire by myself!!  (blank rounds y'all!!) :mad:

Mr Happy

Ahhh, RMAS 1994.

Cadets having rescued some civvies from a building owned by Terrorists somewhere exits away from the incident (urban clensing?) with civvies in a convoy of trucks and L/R's before getting ambushed by lots of little ghurkas ALL firing schmeulies/16mm sig flares in the LAW role, being a rescued civvie in the back of the open top L/R with stuff flying bouncing off the side and between us I opted for climbing inside my suitcase.  Not wanting a 1mm candlewatt burn...

Sorry, if I had exaggerated this story could have been funny...
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