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Thread: Shooting Starting Fires?

  1. #1
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    Default Shooting Starting Fires?

    The national news stories online are full of the wildfires outside and there's a lot of talk lately about some of those fires being started by target shooters. Of course the stories are pretty short on specifics.

    I'm a little perplexed about how a piece of lead hitting the dirt is going to start a fire. Of course if one shot a tracer or incendiary round at anything flammable that would be a different story. I suppose a fire could also be started if ones muzzle blast got close to some dry vegitation.

    It seem to me that with reasonable precautions shooting shouldn't start fires. Any thoughts on this? Anyone here who doesn't shoot when it's dry? Thanks....Louis
    Louis Knapp

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    Supporting Member Amigo Will's Avatar
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    The bullet is hot but not that hot.
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    Sponsor ADfields's Avatar
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    Very uncommon but it has happened down in super dry Arizona, bullet strike rocks and rocks bang around makeing sparks (shooting at night down there I have seen the sparks) that ignites the dry dead grass laying on the rocks. Itís kinda a magic bullet deal but has happened, down where itís so dry it doesnít take much at all to get a fire and then it grows so fast you canít believe it but mostly itĎs an excuse for reporters to say something bad about guns.

    Much more common though is cigarette buts, poorly extinguished camp fires, and car catalytic converters starting fires. Last summer my brotherís wrecker with all the new EPA crap on it went into DPF regeneration mode working a wreck near Wickenburg AZ and set the desert ablaze, fires are very easy to start down there in the dry dead stuff. Notice you never hear the media folks say anything about the emissions systems on vehicles starting fires though even though itĎs common.
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    Member .338-06's Avatar
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    Of course, shooting at propane tanks can magically start fires too. Have you looked at all the stupid stuff people shoot at on YouTube?
    I may be slow, but I get where I'm going!

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    OK...I'll buy the tracers but not a copper jacket or lead bullet hitting a rock or rocks hitting rocks or whatever...I heard this has happened 20 times this summer....get real!!!
    Somewhere along the way I have lost the ability to act politically correct. If you should find it, please feel free to keep it.

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    Sponsor ADfields's Avatar
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    Yea I think bullet fires are more like once in 20 years world wide, 20 times a year is just gun hating reporters looking for something to blame on guns.

    Shot a lot of propane tanks without starting any wild fires but just because nobody under estimates the fire starting poetical there. Propane tank target, know the thrill of laughing uncontrollably while running for your life through the sticker-plant filled desert at night with flash blind!
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    Default Overblown but...

    I agree that the news media will totally blow things out of proportion but there are a few things to remember.

    One is that a lot of bullet jackets now are steel - not copper. Check some ammo out with a magnet and you will see. Steel jackets are esp common on military and imported FMJ rounds. Don't know if a steel round striking a rock will cause a fire but it sounds very possible.

    Second is that the exploding targets are becoming more popular. I saw something recently put out by the BLM down south that expressed a concern about the exploding targets starting fires.

    All being said - I think the possibility of starting a fire by shooting is very possible but still a lot less than the probability of a fire being caused by a campfire, smoking, vehicles etc.


    Quote Originally Posted by Lowrider View Post
    OK...I'll buy the tracers but not a copper jacket or lead bullet hitting a rock or rocks hitting rocks or whatever...I heard this has happened 20 times this summer....get real!!!
    Living the urban lifestyle so I can pay my way and for my family's needs, and support my country. And you?
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    Target shooters out shooting, but they didn't say weather they flipped a stuid cig out into the brush which started it, or a hot exhaust or, or, or

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    Does this mean I should stop taking hammerite targets out camping??

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    Quote Originally Posted by ak47 View Post
    Target shooters out shooting, but they didn't say weather they flipped a stuid cig out into the brush which started it, or a hot exhaust or, or, or
    Exactly.......shooters probably, but shooters that started the fire with a cig is more like it........
    Sheep hunting...... the pain goes away, but the stupidity remains...!!!

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    Member stevelyn's Avatar
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    I could see tracers starting fires. I did it while marching in Uncle's Legions back in the day. I can't see anything else doing it even Tannerite and its competitive products unless said shooters were engaged in some other sort of d-baggery using flammables.

    That said, the media can't be trusted to tell the truth about anything these days. About the only thing you can really count on in the story was that there was a fire.
    Now what ?

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    Sponsor ADfields's Avatar
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    Itís surprisingly easy to start a fire in hot dry places, ever seen a hay stack start fire all on its own just from the heat deep in the middle of it? That's quite common down in the Southwest if you bail it after a little rain storm, don't seem like damp grass would burn but she sure will all on its own. I have no trouble at all seeing how a bullet can start a fire under the right conditions once in a great while, IĎve seen a lot of stranger things than that.
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    Tracers yes. But I have fired or supervised the firing of thousands of rounds of non-tracer (machine gun quals) into dry brush and grass with no problems.

    Look at the source:
    *The media works for the left.
    *The left does not want you to have firearms.
    * So if you went shooting five days ago and have a barbeque fire this week at your house..... You are now a target shooter who started a fire........
    Floatplane,Tailwheel and Firearms Instructor- Dragonfly Aero
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  14. #14

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    it's all the b.s. the media does and how bad guns are, ooooh bad guns. now it's just not the guns that are dangerous it's all the other stuff associated too. And float better be careful because saying things about the left here, when others have they get the boot, or get there accounts locked?

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    ADfields - "spontaneous combustion" does, in fact, start hay fires and quite commonly in the Northwest as well - We had farmer neighbors in the area who had barns burn to the ground due to it, pressure from baling and/or weight when stacked does it - I would be as concerned about that as shooters starting a fire from actually "shooting"
    ak47 - YOU are EXACTLY correct !! (as are the other "left" comments)- as soon as they take MY guns away I'm gonna get involved in the "anti-golf" movement !! and maybe "tennis" too !! dangerous stuff as well .....

  16. #16

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    A guy driving out in the grass with a hot catalytic converter is a good possibility, too. I've come close to starting fires with smoldering patches from traditional muzzleloaders shooting patched round balls. And like ADfields, I've been able to show sparks at night in the right kind of rocks- with lead handgun bullets no less.

    But I agree that it's pretty rare and takes just the right combo to make any of it happen. Cigbutts are dandy in lots of conditions.

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    Second is that the exploding targets are becoming more popular. I saw something recently put out by the BLM down south that expressed a concern about the exploding targets starting fires.
    Tannerite can't even start a fire.
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