It is back to the shooting range tomorrow, Saturday, the 5th of September, as the new alert Level 2 regulations allows for the reopening of non-contact sport. Bulletin spoke to SA Hunters (SAHGCA) Mopani Branch vice chairperson, Gavin Meridith, on the preventative measures that are now expected to be in place to operate in a ‘safe and hygienic’ space.

Just like other sport institutions, a lengthy list was released indicating what is to be expected from the branch to operate a Covid-19 free environment. According to Meridith, the recent move to Level 2 did not change any of the responsibilities and protocols to be followed by SA Hunters branches during the management of shooting ranges under Level 3.

“As with all activities during lockdown the resumption of shooting sport activities comes with certain conditions” stated Meridith. “Only 40 shooters, four relays of 10 shooters, would be allowed on the range at any one time and shooters must book prior to the event.”

Designated Covid-19 Health and Safety Officers will manage and oversee the planning and execution of the event and adherence to the standards of hygiene and health protocols relating to Covid-19. Persons over the age of 60 and persons with pre-existing medical conditions should consider the risk to themselves, of attending sporting events. They would however not be turned away should they choose to attend the event.

According to Meridith, the senior and junior shooters will participate on separate shooting ranges approximately 300 meters apart. He said that the seniors will shoot the Bushveld shooting exercises for scoped (HG01) and open sight (HG02) rifles on the Zebra target at distances of 150m, 100m and 50m.

Moreover, the Juniors will shoot the U9 springer air rifle (JA01), U13 PCP air rifle (JB01-B), and U18 PCP air rifle (JC01-B) for exercises. The range will also be sanitized before, during and after the event.

All persons will undergo the completion of Covid-19 Questionnaire and Control List. Shooting points on the firing line should be at least 1.5m apart and social distancing on the firing line will be maintained. Masks must be worn by all who enter the range and facilities and only individually pre-packed meals with disposable drinking bottles will be allowed at the facility.

“If a person’s temperature is above 37.5 degrees Celsius, we will let the person wait for a few minutes and take the person’s temperature again, if it is still exceeding 37.5 degrees Celsius, we will refuse entry to the shooting range. On completion of the event, no gatherings will be allowed, and everyone must depart immediately,” concluded Meridith.