From 1 January 2016, is compulsory for all shottists (adults and children) to wear shooting glasses on shooting ranges during SA Hunters and Game Conservation Association’s branch, regional and national shooting activities. This rule will apply when using all type of firearms and air-rifles. Spectators do not have to wear shooting glasses.
Hearing protection (ears) is also compulsory on all SAHGCA shooting ranges and all other shooting clubs, hunting and sport shooting associations. Damage to hearing caused by shooting is relatively easy to notice since damage are progressive in cases of gross negligence.
Eye protection are not even considered by many shooters. One often hears of incidents where problems with firearms occur, emphasising the importance of wearing eye protection, for example:
- SAHGCA National Inter Branch Team Shoot Competition at Soutpan shooting range in August 2013: On the Friday afternoon prior to the national shooting competition, a shottist’s rifle gave trouble during the shooting-in exercise. Fragments of the primer/case hit the shottist in the face and eyes. He nearly lost an eye! Following this incident, this young person, who is an excellent shottist, vowed to always wear shooting glasses while on the shooting range.
- SAHGCA Regional Inter Branch Team Shooting Competition at Elerbeck shooting range, Clocolan in January 2014: During the shooting competition something went wrong with a shottist’s rifle. A portion of the synthetic stock broke off and hit the shoulder of another shottist, causing a superficial wound. It could just as easily have been his eye!
All shottists are encouraged to start using shooting glasses immediately in preparation for the compulsory requirement that will come into effect at all SA Hunters and Game Conservation Association shooting activities from 1 January 2016.
Persons who wear prescriptions glasses already comply with this requirement. However, they are encouraged to replace glass lenses with synthetic lenses for shooting purposes. Synthetic lenses provide better protection than glass lenses should a foreign object hit the face and eyes.
Persons who do not wear glasses on a permanent basis, should acquire shooting glasses from firearm dealers or optometrists.
Shottists who arrive at a SAHGCA shooting range without the necessary eye protection will not be allowed to participate in any shooting activities. Range officers will be obliged to apply this rule without any exception, and will not entertain any discussions on the matter.