Yank weapon handleing

Discussion in 'Multinational HQ' started by TABBER, May 21, 2006.

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  1. Im not into international slagging that much.....

    Just come off an American run range.

    They dont fire off when clearing, this includes when entering base's and safe zones.
    When I asked why the response was, 'incase it shoots'

    Im now walking around overtly concious of all US personell whenever they're carrying. And since some of them seem to get off on having a 'hot' weapon even in perfectly safe enviroments it doesn't build much confidence in my new collegues.

    Anyone else had this sh*t?
  2. Yes ran a range for our Septic friends in Iraq and nearly had to throw everyone of them of the range as they were all unsafe.
  3. Had a Major turn up on the range package at the beginning of a Telic, walked up and said "Who's the headmotherf*cker in charge her?" then gave the staff a headache witth his drills and skills!
  4. SOPs in the septic bases in Kabul are to keep weapons loaded. That's reassuring.
    I guess it's just in case the 'gooks' start coming over the wire...

    NB, for gooks, insert chogies.
  5. Worrying video...

    My experience of them was over-protective to the extreme followed by total free for all. The situation was at all times on range weapons had to be pointing down range. This includes the area waaaaay back behind firers. The weapons had to be carried aiming up and to the correct side, if you changed direction of walking the weapon direction had to be changed. This was even before we'd been issued any ammunition and we'd been cleared onto the ranges. So far more **** than any range I've been on here, yet suddenly once you got onto the firing point it became the free for all. On "load" muzzles were going all over the place, I know it's practice to slap the bottom of an m16 magazine (so they told me), but it still made me wince. Then over some loud speaker "charge those weapons, set them to seeeeemiiiiiiiiii and pull that trigger", not an orderly "make ready" "target 100m to your front in your own time, go on" etc... Basically it felt like a cowboy film, with muzzle awareness on the firing point non-existant, which is a complete joke considering what we'd gone through before getting onto the firing point.

    Anyone else found anything like that?

    P.S To be fair no NDs, blank or live in the 3 1/2 weeks I spent with them, which is an improvement on ranges in this country (the annoying way 5.56 hides all the way down the barrel and if NSPC not carried out correctly "bang fcuk". Not done it myself I may add)
  6. I think that alot of yank troops consider the range to be for recreational shooting and blowing off steam. That's the impression I get from videos and stories my friends have told me. This is especially true of the marines, and national guard units from southern states. It's just a cultural thing.
  7. On a personal level I've been handling Firearms since before I was 12( learning to shoot the garand), maybe we are more comfortable with them? Always made my section clear according to the reg's & personally inspect, never had an ND in the Company. I was more concerned with all the shoulder holstered pistols which would point back at whomever was behind them. Cp. Victory was horrendous for that, staff officers running to & fro with them.I suppose it is more likely with CSS units to have ND's?
  8. I've run several ranges as the senior NCO and it is extremely **** until you get on line and go live. Since I don't know what sort of range you were on--pop ups?--I can't comment. I do know that both coaches (if used) and safeties behind the shooters need to be situationally aware, ie keep muzzles pointing down range. Otherwise, yes, the soldiers engage the targets at will. I can't vouch for the ranges of some units in Iraq--ours remained pretty standard--being in a combat zone may have led some units to be lax.

    In any American unit you'll have a large percentage of soldiers who grew up around and/or own their own personal weapons, from handguns to hunting rifles and everything in between. This familiarity leads to a lot of overconfidence in a few like the knucklehead in the video.
  9. It was a zeroing range followed by a pop-up range (equivelent of our annual personal weapons test? - out of 44?) at Fort Lewis.

    I'd noticed the familiarity with weapons that had come from being brought up with weapons - about 75% had.

    I think a major difference was that all ranges they'd been on previously, and all we were on there had several hundred miles of nothing behind them, so muzzle awareness wasn't so important as a whole load of ranges in the UK where going 1 foot above the sand-bank could be sending 5.56mm into a village centre
  10. That's something I'd never even thought of, most US ranges are set in the middle of nowhere, miles from any civilian population. Our major worry regarding stray rounds was the odd tracer round starting fires in the woods behind the target berms, which happened often in the summer (on Ft Bragg, North Carolina).

    What did you think of the Ft. Lewis? Beautiful area, I'm moving to Seattle in a month after nearly two decades in the South. I'm originally from that part of the US (Oregon) and three of my siblings were born in the nearby military hospital on McChord Air Force base. It rains far to often there for my tastes, but when the weather is clear that view of Mt Rainier is stunning.
  11. Unit SOP. The American Military is a big place. You might get one or two "slight" differences in Range SOPs. As well as when a weapon will be carried "hot".

    Is it a basic qualification range? Maneuver Live Fire? Known Distance Range? Combined Arms? Which service? Branch? What base? etc., etc., etc.

    Your comment is a bit like me enjoying a single meal of Dumplings in Butterscotch Sauce and pronouncing to the world that British cooking is crap.
  12. I'm not sure what 'Firing off' is, but if you mean pulling the trigger after clearing the weapon, the M-16 and its derivatives cannot be set to 'safe' unless the rifle is in a charged state. If the rifle (or pistol, for that matter) was cleared properly, by removing the source of ammo and visually inspecting the chamber, there should be no need for a dry fire.

    As for the **** comments on the range, the earlier posters are quite correct. The US Army takes all the fun out of shooting. Once the release to shoot has been given, pretty much the only rule is 'keep the rifle pointing downrange' until it's time to have your rifle cleared and rodded by the range staff.

    "Shooters, move forward"
    "Assume a good, comfortable prone unsupported firing position"
    "Load and lock one twenty round magazine"
    "Move your selector from safe to semi, and scan your lane"

    More formal comments like "Target 100m to your front" or "In your own time, fire" are irrelevant as the US shooting tables involve targets at mixed ranges and which pop up and down in their own time, not in yours. Which seems reasonable enough. The zero range is such that when the three rounds are fired, the rifles are placed in supports and not to be touched until after everyone has simultaneously walked down, simultanously checked their work, simultaneously walked back, and then simultaneously authorised to pick up and adjust their sights.

    As for in theater, I saw one extreme to the other: Anaconda was stupidly **** about clearing weapons, and had clearing barrels all over the base. On the other hand, the small little base I ran, and the larger one up in Mosul I was at for a couple of months were populated almost exclusively by combat troops who were very familiar with their rifles, and magazines were often kept in the rifles and sidearms at all times. (Though of course no round chambered)

    The comments about the range for recreation are also quite correct. I often go to the range for recreation (Civilian), the military ranges allow me to blow off automatic steam, instead of semiauto. The video with the guy shooting off two SAWs is not exactly standard practise, but not really dangerous as long as there's nobody within an arc to his front.

  13. Again, though, most of that is Unit SOP. It is quite possible to "have fun" on US Army ranges. You just need a good plan, good coordinations with Range Control, good RSOs/Safeties, and leaders who are not raging p@ssies.

    Good leaders come up with creative ways to build an effective team. Lazy leaders use safety as an excuse, and simply refer to the book-method of teaching because it's established and an easy way out.

    You are thinking too "Old School." The Quick-kill system used for BRM was developed in the 1950s. And yes, it works, however it's simply a building block. There is a wealth of material out there from the SOF and Operational side of the house (ARM, Reflexive Fire, CQB/CQC, RSOP, SFARTIC, etc.) that stresses realism. Keeping weapons loaded is a large part of that as well.

    Literally hundreds of thousands of police officers walk around with their pistols loaded with rarely an AD/ND. Same concept. The only ND's I've witness from individual weapons have been during loading/unloading procedures.

    Just because the BRM block is checked does not mean that the unit is proficient in marksmanship. Nor does it mean that every unit in the US Army does it that way.
  14. Well...um...it...never mind.

    Maybe you might have chosen a better analogy?