A local news channel in Nashville, TN is reporting on a shooting range employee who is suffering from lead poisoning. After weeks of working at a gun range, Don Haines began experiencing symptoms such as loss of appetite, loss of energy, irritability, and difficulty comprehending in conversations. Doctors eventually diagnosed him with lead poisoning. When Haines was hired as the range safety officer, his blood lead level was recorded at 3 micrograms per deciliter. Eight months later, it was recorded at 60 micrograms per deciliter!
Exposure to lead dust and fumes at the firing range can present a potential health risk to shooters, firearms instructors, other range employees and their families. Lead contaminates shooting ranges in many ways:
- Exploding primers containing lead styphnate and the friction from the lead slug against the gun barrel create airborne lead.
- Spent bullets and settled dust can contaminate both indoor and outdoor ranges.
- Slugs hitting the bullet trap, walls, floors or ceiling of the range create lead dust.
- The process of removing spent bullets or the face of earthen bullet trap backstops can generate large quantities of lead dust.
- Airborne lead dust can concentrate in outdoor ranges, depending on weather conditions.
- Lead dust can collect on clothes during the day. When those clothes are worn home, the lead can contaminate shooters’ cars and homes.
If you or someone you know frequents shooting ranges, here is how you can protect yourself:
- Keep the bullet loading area clean.
- Make sure the range is correctly ventilated.
- At the range, wash hands & face before eating, drinking, or smoking.
- Wash hands & face before leaving the range.
- Wash range clothes separately from the rest of the family’s clothes.
Simply washing with ordinary soap & water will not significantly reduce the spread of contamination or the danger of ingestion. So BE SAFE by using CLEAN-ALL HEAVY METALS HAND & BODY SOAP – The latest in soap technology, formulated to bond with lead residue so it simply rinses away. It is also an effective way to keep surfaces and laundry clean & safe.