The approved range commands and their sequence are as follows:
"Do you understand the course of fire?"
Once the shooter moves to the start position, the Range Officer asks the shooter if the shooter understands the course of fire. If the shooter has any further questions or requires clarification of the stage requirements, he may ask the Range Officer at this time. If the shooter indicates assent, the Range officer will proceed at this point.
"Load And Make Ready "
(or "Make Ready for starts with an unloaded firearm). This command signifies the start of "the Course of Fire". Under the direct supervision of the Range Officer the Shooter must face down range, or in a safe direction as specified by the Range Officer, fit eye and ear protection, and prepare the firearm in accordance with the stage briefing. The Shooter must then assume the required start position. At this point, the Range Officer will proceed.
Once the "Load and Make Ready"
(or "Make Ready" for starts with an unloaded firearm) command has been given, the Shooter must not move away from the start location prior to issuance of the "Start Signal" without the prior approval, and under the direct supervision, of the Range Officer. Once ready, the shooter may not handle the firearm whatsoever prior to the start signal without the prior approval, and under the direct supervision, of the Range Officer.
"Signify when ready. "
If the Shooter is not ready at the "Signify when ready?" command, he must state "Not Ready". It is suggested that when the Shooter is ready he should assume the required start position and clearly indicate his readiness to the Range Officer.
This command should be followed by the start signal within 1 to 4 seconds.
The signal for the Shooter to begin their attempt at the course of fire. If a Shooter fails to react to a start signal, for any reason, the Range Officer will confirm that the Shooter is ready to attempt the course of fire, and will resume the range commands from "Signify when ready."
In the event that a Shooter inadvertently begins shooting prematurely ("false start"), the Range Officer will, as soon as possible, stop and restart the Shooter once the course of fire has been restored.
"Stop or Cease Fire"
Any Range Officer assigned to a stage may issue this command at any time during the course of fire. The Shooter must immediately cease firing, stop moving, point the firearm safely downrange, and wait for further instructions from the Range Officer.
"If You Are Finished, Unload And Show Clear"
If the Shooter has finished shooting, he must lower his handgun and present it for inspection by the Range Officer with the muzzle pointed down range, magazine removed, slide locked or held open, and chamber empty. Revolvers must be presented with the cylinder swung out and empty.
"If Clear, Hammer Down, Holster"
After issuance of this command, the Shooter must not resume shooting. While continuing to point the handgun safely downrange, the Shooter must perform a final safety check of the handgun as follows: - Self-loaders – release the slide and pull the trigger (without touching the hammer or de-cocker, if any). - Revolvers – close the empty cylinder (without touching the hammer, if any). - If the gun proves to be clear, the Shooter must holster his handgun. Once the Shooter's hands are clear of the holstered handgun, the course of fire is deemed to have ended.
"Range Is Clear"
Shooters or Range Officials must not move forward of, or away from, the firing line or final shooting location until this declaration is given by the Range Officer. Once the declaration is made, officials and Shooters may move forward to score, patch, reset targets etc.
LOADING, RELOADING OR UNLOADING DURING A COURSE OF FIRE
When loading, reloading or unloading during a course of fire, the Shooter's fingers must be visibly outside the trigger guard, and the firearm must be pointed safely down range or in another safe direction authorized by a Range Officer.
Except when the Shooter is actually aiming or shooting at targets, all movement must be accomplished with the fingers visibly outside the trigger guard and the safety should be engaged. The firearm must be pointed in a safe direction.
"Movement" is defined as any of the actions below:
- Taking more than one step in any direction.
- Changing shooting position (e.g. from standing to kneeling, from seated to standing etc.).
Shooters confined to wheelchairs or similar devices may be given special dispensation by the Range Officer in respect to mobility assistance at the Range Officer's discretion.
SIGHT PICTURES AND RANGE INSPECTION
Shooters are always prohibited from taking a sight picture with a loaded firearm prior to the start signal.
No one is permitted to enter or move through a course of fire without the prior approval of the Range Officer.
A Shooter who commits a safety infraction or any other prohibited activity during a match will be disqualified from that match, and will be prohibited from attempting any remaining courses of fire in that match regardless of the schedule or physical layout of the match.
MATCH DISQUALIFICATION - ACCIDENTAL DISCHARGE
A Shooter who causes an accidental discharge must be stopped by a Range Officer as soon as possible. An accidental discharge is defined as follows:
- A shot, which travels over a backstop, a berm or in any other direction, specified in the stage briefing by the match organizers as being unsafe. Note that a Shooter who legitimately fires a shot at a target, which then travels in an unsafe direction, will not be disqualified.
- A shot which strikes the ground within 3 meters of the Shooter, except when shooting at a paper target closer than 3 meters to the Shooter. A bullet which strikes the ground within 3 meters of the Shooter due to a "squib" load is exempt from this rule.
* Exception - a detonation, which occurs while unloading a firearm, is not considered a shot or discharge subject to a match disqualification.
- A shot which occurs during remedial action in the case of a malfunction.
- A shot which occurs while transferring a handgun between hands.
- A shot which occurs during movement, except while actually shooting at targets.
* Exception: When it can be established that the cause of the discharge is due to a broken or defective part of the firearm, the Shooter has not committed any safety infraction in this Section, and a match disqualification will not be invoked. The firearm must be immediately presented for inspection to the Range Officer or his delegate, who will inspect the firearm and carry out any tests necessary to establish that a broken or defective part caused the discharge.
MATCH DISQUALIFICATION - UNSAFE GUN HANDLING
Examples of unsafe gun handling include, but are not limited to:
- Handling a firearm at any time except when in a designated safety area or when under the supervision of, and in response to a direct command issued by, a Range Officer. The expression "handling a firearm" includes holstering or un-holstering a firearm, whether or not the firearm is visible (e.g. while concealed by a protective cover, etc.) together with adding or removing a firearm to/from the Shooter's person whether or not the firearm is wholly or partially holstered.
- Allowing the muzzle of a firearm to point up-range, or past the default, or specific safe angles of fire during a course of fire.
- Allowing the muzzle of a handgun to point at any part of the Shooter's body during a course of fire (i.e. sweeping). A match disqualification is not applicable if sweeping occurs while drawing or re-holstering a gun, provided the Shooter's fingers are clearly outside the trigger guard.
- Allowing the muzzle of a loaded handgun to point up-range beyond a radius of 1 meter from a Shooter's feet during drawing or re-holstering.
- Wearing or using more than one handgun at any point in time during a course of fire.
- Failure to keep the finger outside the trigger guard while clearing a malfunction where the Shooter clearly moves the firearm away from aiming at targets.
- Failure to keep the finger outside the trigger guard during loading, reloading, or unloading except where specifically permitted.
- Failure to keep the finger outside the trigger guard during movement.
Having a loaded and holstered handgun, in any of the following conditions:
- A single action self-loading pistol with the chamber loaded and the safety not applied.
- A double action or selective action pistol with the hammer cocked and the safety not applied.
- A revolver with the hammer cocked.
Retrieving a dropped firearm. Dropped firearms must always be retrieved by a Range Officer or, at the direction and under the direct supervision of the Range Officer who will ensure, after checking and/or clearing the firearm, it is placed directly into the Shooter's gun case, gun bag or holster. Dropping an unloaded firearm or causing it to fall outside of a course of fire is not an infraction; however, a Shooter who retrieves a dropped firearm is in violation of the safety rules.
MATCH DISQUALIFICATION - UNSPORTSMANLIKE CONDUCT
Shooters will be disqualified from a match for conduct which a Range Officer deems to be unsportsmanlike. Examples of unsportsmanlike conduct include, but are not limited to, cheating, dishonesty, failing to comply with the reasonable directions of a Match Official, or any behavior likely to bring the sport into disrepute.