Safety Rules for Shooting
at Sarasota Trap, Skeet and Clays
1. Must wear eye and ear protection at all times when on shooting venue, such as trap field, skeet field, or sporting clays course. It is probably a good idea to leave your glasses on at all times when you are outside at the Club premises.
2. M.A.T. = Muzzle, Action Trigger
Muzzle must be pointed in a safe direction at all times whether the gun is loaded or not. Never in the direction of any person.
Action must be open when not shooting. Semi Automatics (Pumps as well) must have action locked open. Over-Unders must be broken open, until placed in a rack or gunholder on golf carts.
Trigger. Your finger should never be near the trigger until you are on the shooting station, muzzle pointed safely down-range and it is your turn to shoot.
3. Treat every gun as if it were loaded. Respect the lethal quality that a shotgun has.
4. Never point a gun at anything that you don’t intend to shoot. At Sarasota Trap, Skeet and Clays the only things that we shoot at are Clay Targets and the Patterning Board.
5. You must be aware of what is down-range of where you are shooting. For example, if you see a worker loading traps out in the field, you must wait until the field is clear down-range and safe for shooting.
6. When carrying a shotgun, even when the action is open, the Muzzle must be pointed either at the sky or at the ground.
7. Never rest the Muzzle on your toe.
8. Until it is your turn to shoot, your shotgun should be in the gun rack. If you are shooting a round of trap or skeet, your unloaded shotgun should be pointed at the sky or the ground or safely down-range.
9. If you are handed a gun or you are asked to pick up a gun, the first thing that you do is check to make sure that it is unloaded. To do this you open the action of the gun and make sure that there is not a shell in the chamber.
10. Use only shells that are the correct gauge for the shotgun you are shooting. Never mix 12 ga. shells and 20 ga. shells in your pocket, bag, pouch or vest. A 20 ga. shell (which is almost always yellow) will fit inside a 12 ga. barrel, but will slide down out of sight. A 12 ga. shell can then be inserted into the chamber. The gun will close. The shell will fire. And the barrel of the gun will explode, seriously injuring, or possibly killing the person shooting the gun.
Hang fire. If you pull the trigger and there is a click but the gun does not go off. Do not open the gun immediately, but wait (with the gun pointed safely down-range) for 30 seconds. Only then do you open the gun to remove the shell. Occasionally, (somewhat rarely with modern ammunition) a shell will “hang fire” or have a delayed discharge. Waiting for a brief 30 seconds before opening the shotgun will provide a safe interval so that the shell does not explode as you are opening the gun. Most of the time when this happens, the firing pin has not struck the primer sufficiently to discharge the shell.
Blooper. If the gun fires, but there is only a “poof” sound or any sound other than a regular discharge, then you must open the shotgun and make sure that the misfire has not left a partial obstruction in your barrel.
Badly Maintained gun or gun with a Fault. Sometimes a gun which has been badly maintained or has developed a fault or a defect, may discharge immediately when the gun is closed. (The same thing can happen if you close a gun with your finger on the trigger) If your gun is pointed safely down range, as it is supposed to be, then the gun will discharge harmlessly down-range.
12. Shooting under the influence of alcohol or drugs is not allowed and is illegal under the laws of the State of Florida.
13. No shot larger than 7 ½ may be used. No load greater than 1 1/8 ounce may be used. The shotfall zone and the safe design of the Club is based on how far these loads will travel. Larger shot especially, will travel farther and could present a danger. Most hunting loads have larger shot (6, 5, 4 sized shot is not uncommon) hotter faster loads and more shot (often up to 1 1/4 ounce or 1 ½ ounce).
14. Sarasota Trap, Skeet and Clays is for shotgun shooting only. It is unsafe and against the rules to discharge any other type of firearm on the range.
15. Although not technically safety rules, Sarasota Trap, Skeet and Clays Club has additional rules that prohibit loud, abusive or vulgar language, or being verbally abusive or disrespectful to Club employees. There is also a general rule that provides that if a person creates a disturbance or conducts himself or herself in a manner that negatively affects the overall harmony and operation of the Club, that person may be asked to leave and to not come back.
16. Turn in all unused ammunition, if you have any, to the Instructor. You are not permitted to take any ammunition with you.
17. Shooting is only allowed from the designated shooting stand or positions
18. Do not approach, touch, stand near or load any trap equipment. Contact either the office at 941-488-3223 or flag down a Range Officer for assistance.