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One crew member dies, another hospitalized after Alec Baldwin shoots two people on set of his film Login/Join 
Dances with Wiener Dogs
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I hope this gets investigated and handled properly.


Agree. If all they do is the pin-the-tail-on-the-donkey blame game, no one will learn from this experience. From everything I've read so far on this matter they violated basic principles of safety. They failed to identify the hazard and effectively control it given the potential (and realized in this case) consequence. For a catastrophic (consequences can lead to fatality or serious injury) one needs strong and effective controls. There are several options. In this instance they appeared to rely on an 'administrative' control. Basically a procedure that says that someone needs to do something (i.e. safety check a firearm). In the hierarchy of controls this is one of the least effective in that humans are fallible and don't always do the right thing every time (which in this case they obviously did not). You can use administrative controls for catastrophic hazards, but only if you build in sufficient redundancy. Seems like here they relied on the armorer to say a firearm was 'cold'. So in essence they had a single point failure. If the armorer didn't do it right, there was no backup. In a System Safety world, this should never fly. Add in that there were live rounds on the set, this is a mind numbing gap is hazard control.

The other thing the NM OSHA will likely look at is how there were reports a lot of the crew had safety concerns. Now some of this may be hindsight. Or it may have been one claim of 'safety' due to having to drive an hour each way to and from the set. But they'll look at witness statements and see if safety concerns were dismissed out of hand. If so, AB and his company can see some hefty penalties. And I'm sure the lawyers will look at that as well. But the right to stop the job if you see something you believe to be unsafe is something we drill into our employees on a regular basis. We've even given out awards to employees that have done so.

Hollywood does have a pretty good safety record with firearms. Especially given the number of rounds fired on all the sets over all the years. So they probably have a good set of practices and procedures. In this case, it sounds like they were ignored. I for one would like to know where this broke down. But the root cause will likely be the lackadaisical attitude toward firearm safety that started from the top down.


_______________________
“The only power any government has is the power to crack down on criminals. Well, when there aren't enough criminals, one makes them. One declares so many things to be a crime that it becomes impossible for men to live without breaking laws.” Ayn Rand

“If we relinquish our rights because of fear, what is it exactly, then, we are fighting for?” Sen. Rand Paul
 
Posts: 8197 | Registered: July 21, 2010Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Freethinker
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Originally posted by Modern Day Savage:
This suggests to me that this is a common practice on some sets and an action they had likely faced before on other movie sets, and yet are either ignorant of the safety violation or simply comfortable with the safety measures in place despite the safety violation.


We’re obviously still speculating about things, but that’s what I alluded to earlier.

The gun owners who understand and follow the many safety rules that pertain to firearms and shooting are often very sensitive to other people’s violation of them. The limited number of members of the gun-owning community that develops that sensitivity is made up mostly of people who have been exposed to education and correction by other like-minded individuals. That includes formal training and involvement in competition activities.

That in turn becomes almost a mark of the elite: “I know and do things that you don’t know or do.” We see that attitude expressed here all the time with the recurring complaints about things that happen at gun stores or public ranges. That’s why we hear about incidents in which someone berates a child for a firearms safety violation: It gives him the opportunity to influence and control someone else, and bears many similarities to the power members of various clergies have in communities that are governed by strong religious codes.

But such concerns about safety don’t carry over from one activity to another. This is demonstrated by such things as the number of gun owners who ride motorcycles. Protest as much as we want, but it’s a stark fact that riding a motorcycle on the public highways is far more dangerous than driving any car. In my small, rural county the vast majority of traffic accident fatalities happen to motorcycle riders, and that activity is common for only a few months of the year here. If someone were as concerned about the obvious dangers of that activity as many here are about being swept by a gun being shown in a gun store, he simply wouldn’t do it. So why do they do it?

“That’s the way we’ve always done it” is criticized for the complacency it represents, but consciously or unconsciously that governs countless things we do, including sometimes dangerous things. If people have handled guns in a casual, cavalier manner, including routinely pointing them at other people and even pulling the trigger with no bad outcomes, it’s not surprising that they become comfortable with its being done around them. And as has been pointed out, that sort of thing has occurred in literally countless movie and TV productions without anything bad happening. If that practice were as dangerous as something like riding a motorcycle, we’d hear of people being shot on sets every day—or more likely not hear about it because it would be as common as motorcycle accident deaths and injuries.

There are other factors besides the very common “familiarity breeds contempt” truism. It’s just silly to claim that we must always question someone else’s care and competence in performing a hazardous or potentially dangerous activity and confirm for ourselves that it’s safe. I have been present at live fire demonstrations of improvised explosive devices despite the fact that I had no way of judging for myself whether they were conducted in a safe manner. When I let the child members of a law enforcement explorer program fire a precision rifle, did any of them ask, “Is this gun safe to fire? Are we using the proper ammunition?” When I climbed into the back of a light observation aircraft in Vietnam, did I demand to know what the pilot’s qualifications were? All rhetorical questions, of course, because the answer to each is no.

Pointing a gun at someone and pulling the trigger without ensuring that the gun isn’t loaded is obviously much different than submitting ourselves to the scalpel for serious surgery, but justified or not, the fundamental principles are the same and that explains why an incident like this can happen. And a complete and competent investigation of why something like this happened must go beyond “The guy with the gun screwed up.”

Attend any properly-conducted gunsmithing, armorer, or classroom firearms instructional class, and one of the rules will be, “No live ammunition in the room.” Observing the “don’t point at anything you’re not willing to destroy” and “keep your finger off the trigger until you have the intention of shooting” rules would be impossible, so that’s why we have a different rule that applies to such situations. But why not just, “If you have live ammunition, don’t mix it up with the dummy rounds and load it in your gun here”? Because when people are distracted or are thinking about other things, they sometimes do what they’re not supposed to, and therefore the no ammunition rule. That’s also why the rule is applied in other types of law enforcement training involving real weapons that aren’t supposed to be fired.

I could go on and on (yes, I know Roll Eyes ), but if we don’t understand how accidents can happen and how to prevent them beyond hoping that everyone will rely on the most simple and obvious rules, then they can and will continue to happen. As has been pointed out a few times, firearms safety rules are intended to prevent bad things from happening even if they’re not followed perfectly. That’s why there are more than four such rules and why we shouldn’t hope that someone doesn’t just comply with one or two of them.

None of all that, BTW, is intended as an endorsement or justification for what was done or not done on that movie set. I wasn’t there and certainly none of it was my responsibility. Some things could and should have been done differently, but beyond that I’m simply trying to explain the obvious reasons why (IMO, of course) certain things do happen differently.

And FWIW, according to an article in The Wall Street Journal today, it was the assistant director who said “cold gun” and gave it to the actor, not the armorer. He is also the one who supposedly has primary responsibility for set safety.




7/93
 
Posts: 46083 | Location: 10,150 Feet Above Sea Level in Colorado | Registered: April 04, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Get my pies
outta the oven!

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Posts: 31139 | Location: Pennsylvania | Registered: November 12, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I am assuming the shot fired was not done during the filming of the movie. Otherwise it would all be on film and we would know exactly how everything went down, probably from multiple camera angles.

Was this a rehearsal where Baldwin was going through the script? Was this off script, horseplay by Baldwin?


 
Posts: 5154 | Location: Pittsburgh, PA, USA | Registered: February 27, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Freethinker
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There is plenty of discussion elsewhere, but according to the news reports the actor was rehearsing—which they do all the time.




7/93
 
Posts: 46083 | Location: 10,150 Feet Above Sea Level in Colorado | Registered: April 04, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Some of this is starting to make more sense:

- Blanks have a primer and from the back of the case look like any other primed round, while from the front they should have that star crimp typical of blanks.
- Dummies have no primer, and thus a hole in the back of the case, but have a bullet in the case mouth so that when the gun is pointed at the camera the rounds look real.

- The "cold gun" call was intended to mean the revolver was filled with dummies and no blanks. Looking from the loading gate you would see holes instead of primers on all rounds. Looking from the front of the cylinder, dummy rounds look the same as live (non-blank) rounds.
- "Hot gun" would mean there is a blank(s) loaded equal to the number of rounds intended to be "fired" in the scene, which would be checked by the presence of the primer on the round.

So it would seem that at least one live round was loaded into the revolver along with dummies in the rest of the chambers. From the loading gate you would have to view all 6 rounds and verify all had no primer. From the front of the cylinder, ALL would have bullets so they may look identical.

Whether the live round was left in the revolver after plinking off-set, and only 5 dummies were loaded, or live rounds were mixed in with dummies is uncertain.

I am not familiar enough with this particular SAA to know the direction of cylinder rotation and how far the loading gate is from the barrel in terms of indexing the cylinder.

So we have:

A failure of the armorer to ensure the revolver was loaded only with dummies and failure to verify through the loading gate and all rounds had no primers.
A failure of the AD to ensure from the loading gate that all rounds had no primers.
A failure of Baldwin to ensure from the loading gate that all rounds had no primers.

Since it was an SAA, Baldwin had to draw, cock the hammer, and then pull the trigger. There is no way for it to "go off" unintentionally, or ND on draw like some people have done with DA pistols in Serpa holsters and/or bad technique. He drew it, cocked it, and pulled the trigger. His intent may have been to dry fire, but that's often the case with many ND's.

The subject of saying "went off" or other statements that the gun fired without the trigger being pulled is something the media does all the time. This is reinforced by the constant inaccurate portrayals of guns firing in movies when dropped. The extreme case is the dropped MG that tumbles down stairs firing a round at each step killing all the bad guys and leaving the hero alive.

I believe some of this is deliberate to make the public believe that guns are inherently unsafe and prone to firing unintentionally. There have been various efforts to regulate guns under the consumer product safety commission, which would result in mandatory magazine safeties, manual safeties, firing pin safeties, and warnings and stickers all over them to the point of absurdity. Look at a common folding ladder with a paint tray for an example. And all this is geared towards the idea that "guns are too dangerous for people without formal training, like police officers". Cue video of DEA guy shooting himself in the leg in a school.
 
Posts: 4426 | Location: Indiana | Registered: December 28, 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Ignored facts
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quote:
Originally posted by sigfreund:
It’s just silly to claim that we must always question someone else’s care and competence in performing a hazardous or potentially dangerous activity and confirm for ourselves that it’s safe. I have been present at live fire demonstrations of improvised explosive devices despite the fact that I had no way of judging for myself whether they were conducted in a safe manner.


True, however, since there were allegedly 2 accidental discharges at that site shortly before the death, it makes me wonder why people continued to trust the situation.

I get it, when I was put out for surgery 2 years ago, the thought crossed my mind, "I hope this anesthesiologist knows what she's doing." But I continued down the road of trust. But had 2 previous patients died or been close to dying in that facility days before my procedure, I'd high tail it out of there, if I knew about it.

Of course, it's possible that not everyone knew about the accidental discharges on the Rust set. We just don't know.


----------------------
Let's Go Brandon!
 
Posts: 10093 | Location: Salem. No, not that Salem.  | Registered: February 28, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Freethinker
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Originally posted by radioman:
True, however, since there were allegedly 2 accidental discharges at that site shortly before the death, it makes me wonder why people continued to trust the situation.


That’s an excellent point, but to me it’s just more confirmation of my belief that once people get into the “It will all be okay” mindset, it’s extremely hard to break out of it. There have been countless examples of people not doing it, including their actions in disaster situations. Amanda Ripley discusses a number of them in her book The Unthinkable: Who Survives When Disaster Strikes—And Why. A disaster isn’t exactly the same as putting up with a dangerous situation, but I believe the thinking, or lack thereof, is very similar at the least.

I’m still not certain why, but some members of the film crew reportedly quit, and at least a couple of claims were that it was because of concerns about safety. But even if it wasn’t about safety, people may not have associated the unintentional discharges with having any bearing on whether gun rehearsals were conducted safely. Although I don’t know, I suspect that the UDs were with blanks. Had people been firing live rounds by accident before the fatal incident, I believe that would have made more of a difference. But if the thoughts were, “Oh, they’re just blanks,” because only blanks should have been on the set, then the concerns may not have risen higher than, “Come on, dumbass!” If anything, a history of something like frequent unintentional discharges with blanks can condition people to their happening and being nothing to fret about.

Added:

The question has been raised by several people, including other motion picture armorers, “Why was there live ammunition on the set?” Someone obviously brought it there in violation of another of the safety rules, and they are at least partially responsible for what happened because they caused a situation that most of the members there probably would not have anticipated. Perhaps some of the people like the armorer and assistant director did know, but maybe not. In any event, I believe that answering that question would be important not only to determine what sequence of events led to the accident, but possibly for criminal liability reasons.

I don’t know if any prosecutor here would agree with me, but what comes to mind is Colorado Revised Statute 18-3-208., which states: “A person who recklessly engages in conduct which creates a substantial risk of serious bodily injury to another person commits reckless endangerment, which is a class 3 misdemeanor.”




7/93
 
Posts: 46083 | Location: 10,150 Feet Above Sea Level in Colorado | Registered: April 04, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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One issue that may be in AB's favor, is whether it is standard practice in the film industry for the actor to be handed a gun, and for the actor to not check it.

I would expect that this is common, but counterbalancing that are the facts that:
1. The armorer was not at the set, which AB may have known.
2. An AD handed him the gun, which Baldwin may have known was not fully checked.
3. He did not check the revolver himself, despite the recent NDs, and the poor safety on the set in general.

Like everyone, I hope Baldwin is prosecuted for a felony, but anything is possible.


-c1steve
 
Posts: 3734 | Location: West coast | Registered: March 31, 2012Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Fighting the good fight
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Originally posted by Lefty Sig:
Some of this is starting to make more sense:

- Blanks have a primer and from the back of the case look like any other primed round, while from the front they should have that star crimp typical of blanks.
- Dummies have no primer, and thus a hole in the back of the case, but have a bullet in the case mouth so that when the gun is pointed at the camera the rounds look real.


Dummy rounds don't necessarily have an empty primer pocket and an obvious hole in the back of the case. Dummy rounds can have a realistic-looking fake "primer" in the case so that there's no obvious hole.

These types of real-looking dummies are used for close-up shots like a pile of loose rounds laying on a table, an actor loading or checking the cylinder of a revolver, an actor loading a magazine, etc.
 
Posts: 29641 | Location: Northwest Arkansas | Registered: January 06, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Originally posted by RogueJSK:
quote:
Originally posted by Lefty Sig:
Some of this is starting to make more sense:

- Blanks have a primer and from the back of the case look like any other primed round, while from the front they should have that star crimp typical of blanks.
- Dummies have no primer, and thus a hole in the back of the case, but have a bullet in the case mouth so that when the gun is pointed at the camera the rounds look real.


Dummy rounds don't necessarily have an empty primer pocket and an obvious hole in the back of the case. Dummy rounds can have a realistic-looking fake "primer" in the case so that there's no obvious hole.

These types of real-looking dummies are used for close-up shots like a pile of loose rounds laying on a table, an actor loading or checking the cylinder of a revolver, an actor loading a magazine, etc.


The previous quotes from other articles indicate that the Assistant Director may have failed to spin the cylinder and check all rounds for the "hole in the side" of dummy rounds. I think this is ignorant AD and Journalist speak for a missing primer. There would be no way to check for a hole in the "side" without un-chambering all of the rounds. But until we see photos of what was found at the scene it is stil uncertain.

With regard to the two prior "misfires" or "AD's" - we don't know if those were live rounds or simply blanks that were loaded when dummies were supposed to be loaded. That is still a big mistake, and should have compelled better safety practices. But is is a big difference compared to a live round.
 
Posts: 4426 | Location: Indiana | Registered: December 28, 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Originally posted by Flash-LB:
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Originally posted by ulsterman:
"Armorer Hannah Gutierrez-Reed said in a statement through her lawyer on Thursday that she "has no idea where the live rounds came from," according to reports."

We now know the armorer didn't have control of the guns.


What we've got here is an affirmative action hire for Armorer.

More like nepotism. Her father is a well-known movie armorer, so she has connections that open doors even though she lacks experience and competence.
 
Posts: 2287 | Location: WI | Registered: December 29, 2012Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Casuistic Thinker and Daoist
Picture of 9mmepiphany
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Originally posted by Lefty Sig:
With regard to the two prior "misfires" or "AD's" - we don't know if those were live rounds or simply blanks that were loaded when dummies were supposed to be loaded. That is still a big mistake, and should have compelled better safety practices. But is is a big difference compared to a live round.

I thought it was more widely known that on movie sets an "AD" is any time a gun goes "bang", when one isn't expected.

A hot gun is one that will go "bang"...usually when a blank is loaded




No, Daoism isn't a religion



 
Posts: 13947 | Location: northern california | Registered: February 07, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Was it not enough to shoot ONE individual standing by? After one, why did he shoot another?


"...we have put together I think the most extensive & inclusive voter fraud organization in the history of American politics." - Joe Biden
 
Posts: 3036 | Location: AC/Clarksville | Registered: February 13, 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Non-Miscreant
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Originally posted by RogueJSK:


Dummy rounds don't necessarily have an empty primer pocket

These types of real-looking dummies


You've been bringing up issues that make me grumble. There are all sorts of dummy and blank ammo. I guess it matters who manufactured the ammo/dummy or whatever.

The good that can come from this is we will never again hear AB breaching to us. All gun people already dismiss any of the drivel that pours from his mouth. The media will still accept it because he's "an expert". But only at killing innocent folks. I would suggest he retire. And we fill his pie hole with massive amounts of caulking or cement.


Unhappy ammo seeker
 
Posts: 18181 | Location: Kentucky, USA | Registered: February 25, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Ubique
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Originally posted by jtedescucci:
Was it not enough to shoot ONE individual standing by? After one, why did he shoot another?


It's in the reports. The bullet went through the first victim and hit the person standing behind her.


Calgary Shooting Centre
 
Posts: 1433 | Registered: July 06, 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Originally posted by jtedescucci:
Was it not enough to shoot ONE individual standing by? After one, why did he shoot another?


The bullet went through the camerawomen, killing her, and lodged itself in the second victim, as I understand it.



The water in Washington won't clear up until we get the pigs out of the creek~Senator John Kennedy

 
Posts: 977 | Location: Richmond, KY | Registered: February 02, 2010Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I think you’re on to it, big wagon.

…”More like nepotism. Her father is a well-known movie armorer, so she has connections that open doors even though she lacks experience and competence.”

She’ll be tossed under the bus with others…all but AB.
 
Posts: 5299 | Location: west 'by god' virginia | Registered: May 30, 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Casuistic Thinker and Daoist
Picture of 9mmepiphany
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Originally posted by DougE:
quote:
Originally posted by jtedescucci:
Was it not enough to shoot ONE individual standing by? After one, why did he shoot another?


The bullet went through the camerawomen, killing her, and lodged itself in the second victim, as I understand it.

Actually it wasn't the camerawomen, but the cinematographer who was shot. The cameraman was to her left, behind the camera. The second victim, the director, was standing behind the cinematographer as was struck after the bullet passed through her




No, Daoism isn't a religion



 
Posts: 13947 | Location: northern california | Registered: February 07, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Originally posted by 9mmepiphany:
quote:
Originally posted by DougE:
quote:
Originally posted by jtedescucci:
Was it not enough to shoot ONE individual standing by? After one, why did he shoot another?


The bullet went through the camerawomen, killing her, and lodged itself in the second victim, as I understand it.

Actually it wasn't the camerawomen, but the cinematographer who was shot. The cameraman was to her left, behind the camera. The second victim, the director, was standing behind the cinematographer as was struck after the bullet passed through her


More likely me mixing up terms for who is called what on the set. Red Face



The water in Washington won't clear up until we get the pigs out of the creek~Senator John Kennedy

 
Posts: 977 | Location: Richmond, KY | Registered: February 02, 2010Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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