Fylde Coast Muzzle Loaders Society - A Society Dedicated to the Preservation and Use of Black Powder Firearms Fylde Coast Muzzle Loaders Society - A Society Dedicated to the Preservation and Use of Black Powder Firearms
Home | Articles, Reviews & Guidelines | Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ's) | MarketPlace | About the Club

Safety Guidelines
The Ten Commandments of Safe Gun Handling
Guests at the Club
Specific Rules Set Out by Altcar Range Control
Keeping the Ranges Tidy
A Few Reminders..

Safety Guidelines

As with any gun club, safety is absolutely paramount and Fylde Coast Muzzle Loaders Society treats safety procedures extremely seriously.

Range Conducting Officers monitor each and every shooting detail and novices must complete a full 6 month probationary period, during which the potential member must take and pass the NRA Probationary Training Course.

Our Range Conducting Officers must take periodic examinations to retain their Range Control Officer status and the club maintains extensive records about the members and the firearms they use (these details are submitted regularly to the police / the Home Office).

Safety is everyone's responsibility. Please read and abide by the following safety guidelines and help to keep our sport one of the safest around:

  • No smoking in the troop shelter at the Weeton range, or within 30 feet of anyone using black powder (at any range)
  • Always carry your weapon muzzle upwards and remove the bolt where possible
  • Do not move forward of the firing points until all the points are clear i.e. there is nobody still in the pits or handling weapons there
  • Do not touch weapons on the firing points while anyone is down the range
  • Declare any home-loaded ammunition to the RCO and mark on the detail booking sheet: 'F' or 'H' (Factory or Home-load)
  • Be just as careful when handling weapons away from the firing point as on it - if you must try a weapon for size, satisfy yourself that they are safe and always point them away from people
  • The use of hearing protection is compulsory for all persons while at the firing point and strongly recommended (and compulsory for juniors) anywhere else on the range
  • If you experience a misfire, keep your gun pointed down range for at least THIRTY seconds before opening the breech, or trying again
  • Always be aware of where your gun is pointing - holding it nearly vertical while putting your arm through the sling would probably land a bullet right in the middle of the Weeton / Altcar camp if it went off accidentally
[Back to Top]

The Ten Commandments of Safe Gun Handling

  1. Always point the muzzle of the gun "down range", away from the direction of people
  2. Treat every firearm as though it were actually loaded
  3. Leave the gun action open (if applicable to the weapon) and never load the firearm until ready to actually begin shooting
  4. Ensure the barrel of the firearm is kept clear and always use the correct ammunition designed for the gun
  5. Be sure of any target before pulling the trigger of the firearm
  6. Never point a firearm at anything you do not intend to shoot
  7. Avoid climbing or jumping whilst holding a loaded firearm
  8. Never shoot at water or at a flat, hard surface
  9. Always store firearms and ammunition safely when not in use
  10. Avoid alcohol and/or drugs before and during shooting
[Back to Top]

Guests at the Club

Members are reminded that any guests they bring to the range are not allowed to shoot unless they become Probationary Members of the Club first. The charge for this is minimal and application forms are always available at the range.

Probationary members of the club are not accepted as Full Members until several character references and the relevant application forms are completed and checked. Acceptance of any new member is at the discretion of the Committee.

[Back to Top]

Specific Rules Set Out by Altcar Range Control

The Club Agrees To:

  1. Ensure that children under the age of 14 are not allowed to fire on the range under any circumstances
  2. Ensure that the children between 14-18 years of age who fire are supervised by a qualified adult
  3. Ensure that children under the age of 14 are not to stand any nearer to the firing point (FP) than the waiting detail or 50 yards behind the FP, whichever is the farther
  4. Ensure that no children under the age of 14 are allowed into the butts, those between 14 and 18 in the butts must be under the strict control of a qualified adult
  5. Ensure that no dog is brought on or allowed to remain on the premises
In addition:

  • Visitors are not allowed to take photographs on the estate, without prior permission from the Camp Commandant / Range Control
  • All visitors must ensure that they observe the speed limit, conform to the one-way system, park in designated car parks only and do not drive on verges
  • As Altcar is a conservation area, you are requested to either take your litter/refuse home, or to place it in the receptacles provided
  • Members attending Altcar shoots are requested to arrive as early as possible - i.e. before 12:00pm
[Back to Top]

Keeping the Ranges Tidy

Whilst at any ranges used by the Club, please remember:

  • Empty cases, brass and used percussion caps should be picked up and put in the containers provided at the firing points. Not only do they look untidy and may damage mowing equipment, but they can also cause nasty scratches on stocks and woodwork
  • Pick up and throw used patches, plastic bags, rags, etc. in the nearest bin (even if they aren't yours - it all helps). Do NOT put anything into a bin that may explode when heated
  • When stapling up new targets at Weeton, please remove a few of the old ones - the more there are attached to the target board, the more 'confetti' is created with each shot and spread around the target area
  • If the weather isn't windy, please use just three staples per target - one in each top corner and one in the middle at the bottom - a saving of 25%!
[Back to Top]

A Few Reminders

  • All members are reminded that it is their own responsibility to ensure that their Attendance Log sheet is completed at every shoot they attend
  • When signing-in at the range, or at a meeting, please print your name, or at least make it readable. If it can't be read, it will be ignored!
  • Home loaded rounds that exceed the normal factory pressures and muzzle velocities should not be used - why take the chance? It doesn't take much to punch a hole in a piece of paper - shooting will be easier on the shoulder, cheaper, and kinder to your gun if you download
[Back to Top]