info@ssusa.co

info@ssusa.co

New Range Safety Rules

Effective today, we are implementing the following new range safety rules for shooting on the SharpShooters range. These policies are born out of one and only one priority: safety. Some people are not going to like these policies, and therefore will choose not to visit SharpShooters. We realize that, and we think your safety and the safety of our staff is worth it. If you have any questions about these policies, we’re happy to talk them over with you. They might not be perfect, and we will adjust as we learn from this change. We appreciate your understanding, and we hope you appreciate our approach to your safety.

New Rule 1: New or First Time Shooters

New shooters or first time shooters are required to take an introductory firearms training class or private firearms safety lesson from SharpShooters before shooting on the range. By “new” or “first time shooters”, we mean individuals who have never handled or fired a weapon before.

Now, it’s already been noted on Facebook that we are “Pretty dumb to post on Facebook. Can’t one just say “yes I am an experienced shooter”. Class averted.

For these new range safety rules, there will be a quiz. We can’t just take someone’s word for it that they are an experienced shooter. I’ll say it again: there will be a quiz. If you have ANY real experience with firearms, you’ll pass with flying colors. If not, we will very nicely introduce you to one of our firearms instructors. It is up to the discretion of our staff members whether or not you get to shoot on the SharpShooters range.

It’s very much like the policy for not selling someone a firearm. We don’t need a reason. If one of our staff has a bad vibe about you or literally any concern about selling you a firearm, we can refuse to sell you a firearm. Same applies to handing you a gun and letting you go out on the range.

Why are we implementing this new range safety rule? Safety. YOUR safety. Simple as that. Brand new shooters simply do not have firearms safety ingrained in their minds, and are far more likely to endanger themselves and everyone around them. The very best part about shooting is that literally anyone can learn it and become good at it. It’s not like golf or baseball or literally any other sport. You don’t have to be gifted athletically to shoot well, and you can learn firearms safety in a very short time.

We want everyone to learn how to shoot, and we are happy to provide the training to take you from “gun dummy” to competitive shooter.

New Rule 2: Firearm Rental

Another new range safety rule: customers who wish to rent a firearm from SharpShooters have two options: (1) present your concealed carry permit (in Georgia, it’s technically a “Weapons Carry License”) or (2) demonstrate proficiency by loading the firearm, locking the slide back, unloading the firearm, and showing “clear.”

When we rent someone a firearm, there’s no background check, so we don’t know you from Adam’s housecat. We rely on our interaction with you and your behavior while on our premises to determine if we should rent you a firearm. Show us your WCL and you’re good. Show us how to manipulate the firearm, and you’re good.

Policies = Friction

These policies have already been called “firm”, “extreme”, and “dumb”, and it’s only been a few hours. We fully realize that these policies are going to cause some friction at our range check-in counter, and we’re ok with that. We’d rather have the conversation before someone goes into the range than have a much more animated conversation after they’ve done something stupid.

What’s that old saying? An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure? Let’s translate that for the firearms industry: a few hours of training is better than getting shot.

81 thoughts on “New Range Safety Rules”

  1. Kevin, as a long time member I fully support your position and policies.
    I am NRA instructor and RSO. I do a lot of training with youth and parents with air and rimfire rifles. Safety is foremost with me. Hope to see you soon. -Chris Sagar.

    Reply
  2. If someone has a problem with these new policies/rules/procedures that’s a sure sign that you have done the right thing, especially for this person. They clearly don’t understand the value of gun safety (or they’re too self-important the be handling a firearm).

    I’ve heard it said that when you’re dead you don’t know you’re dead. It’s the same thing with stupid.

    Reply
    • “when you’re dead you don’t know you’re dead. It’s the same thing with stupid.” HAHAHAHA!! So true, and until we (or someone else) show a brand new shooter the proper way to treat and respect guns and other shooters, they simply don’t know. It’s not their fault. They just haven’t learned YET.

      Reply
  3. Certainly like others, at first glance and a knee jerk reaction, I would agree with fellow enthusiasts that this is a bit extreme, thinking of a friend of mine who is planning to come and now might not be able to shoot despite having me there who is quite competent. However, he can be trained to learn outside of the range to show competency.

    I do however think back to myself when I just started. I knew enough to be safe, but not to be proficient, and honestly having the barrier may have discouraged me to continue with training and purchasing anything. So I do have some mixed emotions about it, but I understand the safety angle: I wouldn’t want any Jane or Joe next to me to be unsafe. I’ve seen videos; it’s not okay.

    I think the 2A community really benefits when friends help teach others and lead them towards responsible ownership and training. I’ve noticed that this is the best asset of the community: true advocates of the practice and knowledge sharing without ego.

    Appreciate you striving for safety. This will take many awhile to process as I’m sure you already well know, myself included.

    Kind regards,
    Tim

    Reply
    • THIS: “the 2A community really benefits when friends help teach others and lead them towards responsible ownership and training” <-- and that's exactly what we're after. Please, bring your friend and teach him the basics. We've found over the years that when brand new shooters learn properly, they lean towards adopting recreational shooting as a great hobby, because they understand and appreciate that it takes discipline to be safe and proficient.

      Reply
  4. Kevin
    Thank you, several weeks ago I was on the range with my son, to the right of us were 5 individuals who I could tell had no knowledge. They were renting one of your AR’s, twice they turned around to take a selfie with the weapon pointed outwards, not downrange. The safety office finally noticed this and informed them it was not permitted. Personally I feel they should have been removed from the range.
    My wife and I have been members for over a year and I appreciate the new rules you are implementing.

    Reply
  5. Bravo! I would prefer shooting knowing the person next to me is not going to shoot me in the ass, or even worse in the head. Having been a member since you guys opened, I must say this is long overdue. So many times I have stopped shooting to get the people in the next bay to understand some simple fundamentals. As a long time shooter and firearms instructor, I applaud the new policy.

    JimRoberts

    Reply
  6. Happy to see this…. I’ve been flagged more than once by inexperienced shooters. You may save a life with this policy—and perhaps mine.

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  7. I don’t understand why anyone with any common sense wouldn’t applaud these new rules. I liked best the statement that staff having a “bad vibe” is enough to not sell a firearm…. intuition coming from years of experience is a very, very good thing.

    Kudos to you for these new rules.

    Reply
    • Thank you Jim. I think you drive the point home with “anyone with any common sense”, because people who have never been properly trained do not yet haver the same view of recreational shooting that they will once they’ve received some solid training and then seen some stupid stuff happen near them.

      Reply
  8. No need to justify the new rules. Your sandbox, your rules. Just post a picture of the holes in the ceiling on any of the lanes. Keep up the good work.

    Reply
  9. I appreciate the rules, especially on rentals. I DO NOT think them firm or extreme. Quite the opposite. I see what you are doing as being smart policy to protect ALL shooters and guest and I am very appreciative. So I 110% support your efforts here and the safety policies you are putting in place. They protect everyone. Thank you.

    Reply
  10. Well thought out. Anyone who finds these basic rules objectionable should not be on the range. Thanks for thinking about us.

    Reply
    • Thank you Chip. That’s exactly the response we’re seeking. If someone does not value their safety and the safety of those around them enough to learn the basics of firearm safety, we’d prefer they went someplace else.

      Reply
  11. I Honestly have no issues with this. Ive seen some dumb stuff ive had to stop on the range, this is something long time coming imo. And as a long time member/customer, Im in complete agreeance.

    Reply
  12. Bravo Kevin.
    As one of the earlier members of Sharpshooters I have always been observant of inexperienced shooters especially with rental equipment. The new rules are needed to protect novices from themselves and others on the firing line. Safety is smart business. Thanks.

    Reply
  13. As someone who is still gaining experience with firearms, I think these rules are great. I came to this range for my 2nd time handling guns and luckily the RSO was already looking out for me and corrected my improper handhold on the Glock I rented. (The slide would’ve hurt my hand without his advice). A quiz and the equipment handling test will help weed out ppl who may make dangerous mistakes. Anyone more experienced than me shouldn’t have a problem with being quizzed. Thanks for looking out for our safety. Firearms are dangerous and need to be treated with respect.

    Reply
    • 99% of what we do here on a daily basis is educate our customers. From “I’ve never held a gun before” to “what optic mounting rings do you recommend with this PRC setup?” and everything in between, including proper (and safe) grip technique. Thank you, William, for sharing how our RSO helped you out.

      Reply
  14. It might be an inconvenience for experienced for regulars and I get it.
    But for the majority of new gun owners, I feel this change is overdue.
    Last year, I brought my wife and 21 year old daughter to train with a group. A new, first timer kept waving her loaded gun around while in the bay and was reprimanded numerous times. Frankly, we were so stressed we couldn’t enjoy the training.
    So, please remember who these rules are aimed at (pun intended) and be patient with them.

    Reply
  15. I am a first time shooter and me and my husband are signed up and scheduled to take an INTRO CLASS on November 26, 2023. How would I pass a quiz in advance if I am taking an intro class? Isn’t that why I am taking the intro class? Secondly, I am unsure if I want to even obtain a WCL based on how I do taking the intro class and I can’t demonstrate proficiency by loading, locking and unloading if I haven’t taken the class yet. I am not coming to your range to shoot, I am there to take a class. I don’t think you thought this through for all customers. If it is different for customers taking a class then a separate email should have been sent to them. So with at being said, I would like a refund immediately, ORDER #48547 and take my business elsewhere. Thank you and if you have any questions please give me a call directly.

    Reply
    • You’re taking the intro class, so you are ALL SET! Thank you so much for getting proper training. When you take the class, you will learn everything you need to know to shoot on the range safely and enjoyably. This is the entire point of these new policies.

      Reply
      • I sent you an email and left you a voicemail on your business number. We would like a refund on our intro class. You really should have sent out a separate email to the students taking an intro class. This was not a “user friendly” email and was very off putting to those students. You will find my Order # above and in my email. Thank you.

        Reply
      • Just got off the phone with Melissa. We appreciate the return phone call and the refund. No written policy or procedure should ever be implied.

        Reply
    • Apparently reading comprehension isn’t Margaret’s strong suit.
      Try reading this a little slower, and pay attention to the capital letters.
      1) If you are already ENROLLED in the in the INTRO CLASS, you obviously don’t have to take the quiz FIRST. That is the EXACT PURPOSE for taking the class.
      2) Once you have COMPLETED the INTRO CLASS you are NOT REQUIRED to take the quiz.
      What about that is difficult to understand?

      Reply
  16. Love the new policy. Shouldn’t have to look over my shoulder for inexperienced shooters. The training will be good for anyone with no experience.

    Reply
  17. Hi Kevin, I spoke with you on the phone yesterday about pistol rentals. When I came by later in the day, I was informed that I would have to have someone with me in order to rent a firearm(which no one could explain the reasoning behind). You did not mention this to me, and it is not stated anywhere on the website. I was informed that it was a new rule. I was never asked if I had a WCL, which I do, as stated in your new policy. Fortunately , Melissa came out to speak with me, and very graciously agreed to go out on the range with me, so that I could rent a pistol. I did enjoy my time at Sharp Shooters, and the time Melissa spent with me on the range was very helpful.

    Reply
    • Yeah looks like we caught you in the crossfire of announcing these policies and then enforcing them. Very sorry about that. The issue that you “have to have someone with me in order to rent a firearm” is a fairly quiet one in the shooting range world. The reason for that is that individuals who come to a range to take their own life almost always come alone for the first time and rent a pistol by themselves. It’s a pattern, and most ranges – including SharpShooters – have some sort of policy like this in place as something of a deterrent. Sorry again, and hope you enjoyed your time here. Melissa is an excellent instructor.

      Reply
  18. I am concerned that New Rule 1 means that a member can no longer consider Sharpshooters a place to introduce a non shooter to the shooting sport.

    I am also concerned that New Rule 1 means that a member can no longer consider Sharpshooters a place to take visiting shooters from out of town.

    Reply
    • Great questions. Members are generally exempt from these policies, since you’re obviously not a brand new first time shooter, and you are familiar with our range rules and gun safety practices. We encourage you to bring your friends who are brand new shooters as your guests. We trust that you wouldn’t risk your membership by bringing in an irresponsible person to shoot your guns or ours. Thank you for bringing that up. Great questions.

      Reply
  19. These policy changes are great. Video games and real firearms are not the same thing… Holes in the ceiling and walls definitely have a story behind them… Youtuber Brandon Herrera has a serie dedicated to gun fails: “The Darwin Awards”

    Reply
  20. Fortunately I’ve never witnessed a potentially dangerous situation on your firing line. Still, that doesn’t mean they don’t happen. Thanks for looking out for us. Serious shooters should NOT have an issue with these new rules. Also, keep up the good work with those attentive R.O.’s!

    Reply
  21. Thank you for adding these rules. The person who objects to these rules, is the person we shouldn’t want at the range. Make perfect safety sense.

    Reply
  22. I find the new rules interesting, but not egregious. It does add to the sour taste I had while shooting there two years ago with friends/co-workers, all of whom own firearms.

    Had multiple rifles, pistols, MG’s being shot and was accused by a RO of shooting 556 GTs, and was told he knew it had to be GTs because of the fireballs at the muzzle device. It of course was loud and so was he when speaking to us, so of course everyone on the line was watching and listening. To be honest, of course a 7.5″ barrel on an M16 is going to cause fireballs regardless of ammo used. I didn’t appreciate being accused of using, “restricted ammo,” when I wasn’t.
    For further context, there was also two additional MG’s with the group, so it’s not as if we were noobs, so to speak. Especially found it interesting that we were required to watch the safety video since we had not shot there within one calendar year, yet had many times before.

    Reply
    • It’s actually not the fireball out of the barrel that matters. You’re right about that with a 7.5″ barrel on a large caliber rifle. No, it’s when the green tip ammo or steel ammo hits the steel bullet trap. As you can imagine, a range is full of gun powder, unspent from thousands of rounds fired. That build up is what we vacuum away (with a very special and expensive filtered vacuum) every week, but it’s also what has the potential to start a large, fast fire. Steel and green tip ammo creates a much larger fireball at impact, and hence a much greater opportunity to light up all that unspent powder.

      Now, as to watching the safety video, that’s an insurance requirement. We have no choice there.

      Reply
  23. I would classify these changes as “common sense.” Firearm safety is paramount to all responsible gun owners and 2A supporters. We cherish our right to bear arms and promoting firearm safety is one way to protect that right.

    Reply
  24. This is brilliant. No different than skiing the first time. You wouldn’t expect someone to go up the lift, disembark and ski down without representing some kind of aptitude for the activity else they’ll put themselves in jeopardy along with the other skiers nearby and create a lot of unnecessary rescue activity for the ski patrol.

    Reply
  25. It’s about time!!!

    As a veteran and experienced shooter I have been shooting here since you opened. However, I canceled my membership and stopped coming about a year ago. The last two times I went.. it was dangerous and I just left after 5 minutes. Rookie shooters, all sorts of sweeping going on, no range officer present, people with AR’s that couldn’t even operate them on a basic level.

    I think new rules are warranted, welcomed and I will be back.

    Reply
  26. Don’t mind the policy at all. I’ve trained at your facility on AR15 and welcome any additional training, handgun or rifle. Only get one chance to be safe and expect the shooters around me at the range to feel and act the same way. If not, find someplace else to shoot. Don’t want to be the victim of anyone’s stupidity or lack of skill and knowledge. Appreciate
    the policy.

    Reply
  27. I just took the Intro Class (beginner shooter) and it was great. I am signed up to take the next one. I think your rules are extremely reasonable and make me feel safe.

    Reply
  28. These are all appropriate and legitimate rules! I did go to shoot at the range for the first time yesterday. I was informed that I could not rent a firearm without also having my own firearm with me. I completely understand the need for this rule, but despite reviewing the website and calling in advance, I was not aware or informed of this rule. Perhaps making this rule more transparent for new customers would be helpful. Thanks for prioritizing everyone’s safety who uses your great facility.

    Reply

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