Safe Range Procedures

Club Range Regulations establish the organization, responsibilities, rules and procedures to safely conduct recreational and sporting use of archery and firearms at the club, and to coordinate these activities with club use.  Administration and control of the club ranges is as follows:                                                                                           

  • Club Executive-conduct business of the club; establish and control finances; set club policy in response to membership; and conduct meetings.          
  • Activity Chair-certain club activities such as archery, pistol, rifle and trap have a club member elected to manage and organize.
  • Chief Range Officer-prepare, amend and promulgate Club Range Regulations; co-ordinate Range Safety Officer requirements and provide for the training of Range Safety Officers; ensure all range activities are conducted according to Club Range Regulations; attend to range inspections requirements, records keeping, and initiate range maintenance requirements; arbitrate any grievance appeal and issue a final decision/ruling on the matter.
  • Competition/Match Officer-an individual appointed by the Activity Chair to plan and conduct a competition or match. This individual issues any detailed local instructions, ensures applicable Club Range Regulations are made known and understood by all participating personnel, controls and supervises personnel and firearms, ensures all safety regulations are observed during a shoot, issues orders to commence and cease fire, and ensures that the range facilities are left in an acceptable condition. This individual is responsible for Command and Control of the competition or match.                                                                                               
  • Range Safety Officers-individuals appointed by the Chief Range Officer for monitoring all aspects of safety associated with the ranges. A job description is listed in paragraph 31 of this document.
  • Range Officer-an individual who assume responsibility of the range when a Range Safety Officer is not present. This person does not have the scope of responsibilities and duties as a Range Safety Officer.
  • Instructors and Coaches-the control of training is exercised by instructors and coaches who are designated by an executive activity chair, an officer in charge, or are formally recognized by qualification such as a Hunter Education, Canadian Firearm Safety Course or Canadian Restricted Firearm Safety Course instructor. They are responsible to their superior, noted above; for the conduct of specific activities, the supervision and control of personnel and firearms under their command, ensuring safety regulations are observed, and relaying the officer in charge order to commence and cease fire.


The Chief Range Officer will conduct briefings, seminars, or training sessions for Range Safety Officers to ensure they are current, and have a comprehensive knowledge of the Club Range Regulations and procedures.

  • When conducting their duties a Range Safety Officer will use the following as a safety checklist and job description:
  • Make sure the range is clear of hazards; that range flags and signs are displayed: and necessary gates are closed prior to commencing fire.
  • Unloaded firearms not in use are to be placed in the rack or kept in a case. They should be moved with the muzzle up or cased at the firing line.
  • Confirm muzzle direction is always down range.
  • That the action of any firearm must be open at all times except when actually being shot on the range.
  • Ensure that firearms are handled only at the firing line.
  • That no firearm is to be loaded until the range officer gives the command “The Range Is Active”.
  • Ensure that shooters keep their fingers out of the trigger guard until the shooter is in position to fire.
  • Ensure that shooters are not shooting at target holders or other range equipment e.g. distance marking stakes.
  • Check with club for any ammunition restrictions, and how ammunition is be controlled when dealing with juniors during club events.
  • Do not tolerate horseplay, careless handling of a firearm or any other distracting activity while shooting is in progress.                          
  • Upon the command “Cease Fire,” all firing stops at once, firearms are unloaded, actions are opened and firearms laid on the shooting bench, muzzle pointing in a safe direction down range. Check firearms and confirm actions open, and no ammunition in breach. Magazines are removed, if possible, from the firearms.
  • During the cease-fire, no one will handle firearms, ammunition or equipment.  Persons not engaged in changing targets down range should stand well behind the cease fire line. 
  • A Range Safety Officer may ask someone to leave club property for violation of the Club Range Regulations.  If that person refuses to leave, the Range Safety Officer may request the RCMP to remove this person from the club property. The Range Safety Officer must report this situation immediately to the Chief Range Officer. 


Range flags and signs shall be posted to warn people that the ranges are in use. 

  • At the club entrance all shooters and guest shall sign in and raise the main flag to warn others that a shooter is on one of our ranges. 
  • If shooting is not allowed due to a club rental situation then a “NO – SHOOTING” sign is to be posted. This sign should also indicate what event is occurring; the dates of the event; who is the person in charge; and what is their contact phone number.
  • When archery shooting is active a “NO – SHOOTING” sign shall be posted at the main entrance and the gate to the Rifle/Handgun Range. This sign will mean that Rifle/Handgun Range and Trap Range are closed at this time.
  • The gate to the Trap Range shall be closed and the flag at the Trap Range shall be raised when trap shooting is active. Before shooting on the Trap Range you must inspect to ensure no one is on the Rifle/Handgun Range; and close the gate to the Rifle/Handgun Range.
  • The gate to the Rifle/Handgun Range shall be closed when archery shooting is active and a "NO - SHOOTING" sign posted. The red flag shall be raised.
  • When shooters are going to the Rifle/Handgun Range they shall raise the red-flag at the gate to the Rifle/Handgun Range. The gate shall be closed behind you.
  • A red-flag will be raised at the Rifle/Handgun Range building when shooters are inside the building. An ear-protection warning sign shall be permanently posted on the door to the Rifle/Handgun Range.
  • All signs and flags shall be removed or lowered when the ranges are no longer active.
  • The club property shall be posted with “DANGER – SHOOTING RANGE” signs to warm trespassers of the risk at this range.


Along with the Club Rules the shooters must follow the following Range Rules:

  • Read the Club Range Regulations and adhere to them prior to the use of any range.
  • When shooting firearms, hearing protection must be used. Install hearing protection before entering Rifle/Handgun building.
  • The use of eye protection is encouraged but is not mandatory.
  • When handling or uncasing firearms, treat every firearm with the respect due a loaded firearm until you have “PROVEd” it safe.
  • Keep your firearm’s muzzle pointed down range.  Never point a firearm at anything you do not want to shoot. Keep your finger off the trigger until you are ready to shoot. Unload your firearms when not in use. 
  • Discharge firearms only on their approved ranges e.g. pistol shooting only on pistol range. Use only approved ammunition e.g. no slugs on the Trap Range.
  • If you are firing a black powder firearm, if possible, position yourself downwind of other shooters.
  • If you are firing a semi-automatic firearm, if possible, position yourself at a shooting station so the ejected brass does not land on other shooters.
  • Obey all Range Safety Officer and “PROVEd” Range Officer commands instantly.
  • When no Range Safety Officer is present and two or more members and/or guests are shooting on the range, someone must assume the duties of a Range Officer. This member will be responsible for supervising the group and giving the range commands.
  • All firearms must be unloaded and “PROVEd” safe when a cease-fire has been called.  Lay firearms down on the shooting benches with actions open. Remove magazines, if possible. Once a firearm has been “PROVEd” safe by the Range Safety Officer it may be place in the gun racks. Firearms must not be handled while people are down range.
  • Post targets only during a cease-fire. Do NOT post targets on a target holder, only on target boards. Use only approved targets e.g. no glass bottles.
  • Do NOT shoot at any wildlife on the range unless it is safe and legal to do so.
  • Practice good housekeeping by:
    • Shooting only approved targets e.g. no glass targets.
    • Disposing of brass, hull, spent casing, duds, etc. in proper containers.
    • Removing all non paper targets and garbage at the end of the shooting session.
    • Storing club equipment in the proper storage area after use. and
    • Leaving the ranges neat and tidy for the next user.                                                            
  • Seek permission before handling someone else’s firearm or equipment. Never touch another shooter when they are firing. Do not cause anything to distract other shooters from their shooting e.g. loud talking or slamming of equipment on the bench, etc.
  • Make others welcome and share your time.
  • Report any accidents/incidents or infractions of the Club Range Regulations to the Chief Range Officer.
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