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February 03, 2006
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Are You Concerned About Your Exposure to Lead?

At In-Range, the safety of our customers is our top concern. To help make ranges safer environments for range users and staff, In-Range is pleased offer a variety of safety products including first-aid/trauma kits, visibility wear, HEPA vacuums and range-cleaning supplies. If you’re cutting corners dealing with lead at your range, you could be seriously hurting yourself and your family. The following letter outlines the importance of effectively dealing with lead whether it’s at your home or at your range:

To Whom It May Concern:

I have been in the shooting sports for near 40 years now. I have reloaded my own ammunition for just about as long. I started with pistol then rifle and now shotgun. I used to case lead bullets for pistol shooting until swaged bullets became more economical. When melting and casting lead there are inherent dangers associated with this. I did my best to follow manufactures recommendations as far as safety goes.

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After about 10 years I became involved with firearms training at the local police departments were I was employed. At the time I stated to get a blood lead level check done on a monthly basis. During this time period two children came into my family and of course they were hanging around the reloading bench with dad. I was loading pistol ammunition in large quantities because I was shooting large quantities. I thought it would be novel idea to pay the kids to box the ammo for me. Of course they thought it was a big deal to help daddy with his bullets. This activity went on for a few months when my monthly lead check turned higher, significantly higher. Now the search was on for the cause.

We were in the process of transitioning from revolvers to semi-autos and I was spending more time on the range during firing. During the search for the cause my increased leas level, I had my two children tested for lead and they showed positive for lead but not wearing latex gloved while handling lead bullets. My lead level returned to a low level after a couple of months. I no longer load any lead bullets. Reloading shot shells can cause the same problems with the air in front of the reloaded. Continued exposure to lead however so small can become accumulative. The reloaded must become aware of the hazards of lead and reloading and pay attention to it. Soap and water does not clean lead entirely off the skin. I was unaware of any chemicals process that would do this until after several years later when a vendor cleaned our range with products from a company called ESCA Tech Inc. They make several products for heavy metal cleansing. We now use soap especially formulated for heavy metal removal and a product called D wipes towels from the same company. This eliminates 99% of the lead contamination. I wish these products were available years ago.



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