I have fired guns on ranges of many types and in many places. On many occasions, I have been instructed both formally and informally, on range safety procedures and range etiquette, and I firmly believe that I am aware of how I am supposed to behave in a safe and responsible way. Since my work takes me to the range for evaluation shooting of various guns and ammunition, you could logically infer that I would be the last guy to make a major mistake. You would be wrong.
On a recent visit to a local range (which has no Rangemaster and target breaks are by mutual consent of all shooters), I really screwed it up. I was so intent on what I was doing that I failed to notice that another shooter had not returned to the firing line. I fired a shot while he was still downrange. It was well away from him and no one was hurt. He graciously accepted my apology. Obviously, readers would never have known this unless I admitted it. I mention this because there is something we can learn from the incident. If a guy who is thoroughly familiar with range procedures can grow-even momentarily-contemptuous of them, then so can you. Please be careful. I will.