ANDERSON COUNTY, S.C. (WSPA) — A teen is recovering after deputies said he accidentally shot himself in the leg at a shooting range.
According to the Anderson County Sheriff’s Office, the teen is a competitive shooter who was training at a range in Belton.
His gun went off as he tried to reholster it, according to deputies. He was taken to the hospital with non-life-threatening injuries.
It was the second accidental shooting of an Upstate teenager in a week.
7NEWS spoke with a firearms expert about how to safely handle guns, including at shooting ranges.
“Good, basic firearm safety is good for everybody,” said James Frazier. “Never point a firearm at anything that you’re not willing to destroy.”
Frazier is the store manager of SharpShooters in Greenville County. He explained that guns should not be loaded until they will be used.
“If you’re coming in to shoot on the range, it [firearm] needs to be unloaded and separated from the ammunition, and you would only load that firearm when you get into that range and are ready to start shooting in the range,” explained Frazier.
“Inside the range here, the firearm I have is in a holster that has retention built into it so if someone were to try and take it away from me, it’s actually locked in the holster,” he added. “You would have to know the type of holster, and you would have to know how it’s able to be unlocked. Anytime that you’re in the range, we want you to be safe. Therefore, we want you to make sure you have it either in a holster, case or box.”
Frazier said he encourages everyone to have some type of firearm training so they can use those lessons each time they handle a gun.
“It doesn’t matter if you’re a law enforcement officer who’s around firearms all the time or if it’s somebody who’s new to firearms,” he explained. “You need to get the basic safety tenants down to where you are safe around other people.”
The South Carolina Department of Natural Resources has provided a list of “General Range Rules” for shooting ranges.