• HVAC

How to Prevent Lead Exposure at the Shooting Range; Ventilation Design Standards & More

For people with constant exposure, lead can cause serious problems. Every time you make a trip at the firing range, you come into contact with lead. Most indoor shooting ranges will do what they can with the ventilation, bullet traps, and other safety features to minimize the exposure, but simply handling your ammunition exposes you to the lead. Lead is found in most types of ammunition, including in the primer and bullet. Every round that is fired will vaporize the lead into the air, where you inhale or ingest through your mouth various amounts of the lead. Today, we at Shooting Range Industries would like to remind avid shooters about lead poisoning and precautions to take to avoid exposure.

Lead Contamination Symptoms

For starters, lead exposure can affect various parts of your body and produce an assortment of symptoms. They include the following:
Neurological Effects
– Encephalopathy
– Fatigue
– Impaired Concentration
– Irritability
– Loss of Hearing
– Peripheral Neuropathy
– Seizures
– Wrist / Foot Drop
Gastrointestinal Effects
– Colic
– Constipation
– Dyspepsia
– Lead Line on Gingival Tissue
– Nausea
Reproductive Effects
– Abnormal Sperm
– Miscarriages/Stillbirths
– Reduced Sperm Count & Motility
Heme Synthesis
– Anemia
– Erythrocyte Protoporphyrin Elevation
Renal Effects
– Chronic Nephropathy with Proximal Tubular Damage
– Hypertension
– Arthralgia
– Myalgia

How to Reduce Chance of Lead Poisoning

You can reduce lead exposure by using lead-free ammunition, avoid eating, drinking, or smoking while being on the range, keep gloves on while shooting, stick with wearing attire exclusive to the shooting range, wash your hands after shooting, showering immediately after spending time on the range, and washing your exclusive shooting range clothing when you first get home. Simply eating, drinking, and smoking on the range causes you to open your mouth, immediately exposing your breathing and ingesting the lead vapors. Lead residue can settle on any surface as well. Be sure to keep that in mind when you spend time on the range. Most indoor shooting ranges will invest in a state of the art ventilation system that will remove the toxic lead from the air. If you should find that your range has a poor ventilation system, for your own health, shop around. Lead accumulates in the body, and for those that handle ammunition and spend a lot of time on the range, it is a good idea to have your doctor periodically check your levels for lead with a simple blood test. If the results concern high levels, you and your doctor can get it under control before it becomes a medical concern.

Custom Shooting Ranges with Quality Ventilation Systems, Bullet Traps & More

Shooting Range Industries offers custom shooting ranges with the highest quality ventilation systems and additional features such as bullet traps, ceiling guards, target retrieval systems and much more. Contact us today to learn about a portable custom shooting range for your property!

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