A reader is concerned by a neighbouring Gun's behaviour on the peg ...

Q: Last season, I went shooting with a friend of a friend who shoots regularly.  His peg was, for most of the day, next to me or at least very close by. Throughout the shoot, he waved his unbroken gun up and down the line and I certainly was not the only one to notice.

Would you suggest having a quiet word with someone, or in the past have you mentioned it to the host/keeper and left it up to them?

man shooting

20 golden gun safety rules

Always know where your fellow shooters are Have a quick glance around as you walk onto the stand – it…

A duty to condemn dangerous behaviour

Bill Harriman replies:

“I would not have a quiet word with anyone. Rather I would have some very public and noisy words with the man who was endangering everybody because he was a lazy and reckless fool who could not be bothered to conduct himself in a safe and responsible manner.

“We all have a duty to condemn dangerous behaviour as soon as it happens. Causing embarrassment to somebody is not life threatening; being peppered by their shotgun pellets, is.  If the person who has behaved dangerously is not contrite and nobody else will do anything about such lunatic behaviour, then go home and tell your host, the other guns and the ’keeper why you are doing so.

“At least you will be safe and if somebody else gets shot, then that is the problem of those who did not act.

“You may want to consider telling the local Firearms Department. Clearly someone who behaves in an unsafe manner cannot possess a shotgun “without danger to the public safety or the peace”, as the law says.”

broken gun

If it’s not in its slip, you always have your gun broken and unloaded when walking between drives

You don’t want to regret not speaking out

  • If you see a Gun behaving in an unsafe way, don’t hesitate to pull them up
  • Don’t think “it’s not my place” or not the ‘done thing”.
  • Get their attention and say “excuse me do you think you should unload your gun?”
  • As an experienced shooter comments: “If someone walked up to me with a gun closed I would have no hesitation in telling them to open it. I don’t care who it is.”
  • Too many dogs have been shot by Guns taking ground game unsafely
  • If you are a visitor or a guest on a shoot (you might have taken a peg via the internet), pay particular attention to what is going on around you – because you won’t know whether the other Guns are beginners or whether they are safe