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April 11, 2004


Interesting article. My ex-husband was not able to attend my daughter's graduation from high school several years ago because he accidently shot himself in the knee cleaning his "Glock". He was in law enforcement so he knew guns. He was lucky because surgeons could fix all the damage, but a moment of carelessness could have cost him his life.

i think that the glock is a really good gun im going into law enforcement and have shot the glock and its a very accurate and durable weapon, they even demonstrate running it over with a big truck and it still fires at the academy, and i think that if your not smart enough to not have your finger on the trigger which is how were trained and not be stupid enough to hand it to a kid at school then you'll be fine

My first and only handgun is a glock. I know from hand gun saftey that you always check the chamber for a round and I would never ever turn over a loaded gun to someone. I always check and recheck the chamber. Sorry all guns are mechanical devices and can fail. I dont care if the gun has a saftey or not I always check for bullet in the chamber.

I have carried a Glock for years.I treat it like a semi-automatic revolver. "wheel guns" don't have manual safties so whats the problem?
Keep your finger off the trigger until your ready to fire,the first thing you learn in firearm safty courses.

I've had law enforcement training and I've always been around guns since I was 6 yrs old. First two things I was taught: keep fingers off the trigger and always check the chamber for bullets. 23 years later, I still check for the chambers, actually, I double check. I've never owned a Glock (currently own a S&W SW99 .45, .44 revolver, Sig P229), but am planning on getting the Glock 26. It doesn't matter what gun you own, if you're careless, accident is bound to happen!


I read your story and i must say that you are a very MIS-INFORMED person. You have a opinion as does everyone but maybe you should be educated about handguns before you pass judgement on one manufacturer. First of all there is no such thing as an ACCIDENTAL discharge its called User error, The officer than handed the child the firearm is obviously not well trained in the handling and operation of the handgun. Glocks are as safe or even more safe than any other handgun on the market today, Safetys will do absolutely nothing to protect anyone, If the user is not well educated/trained in the use of their handgun pure and simple! And for you to point out glock saying their unsafe shows your lack of firearm education.

The year was 1992, I E.T.S. from the military and after returning home I purchased a Glock 23 .40 S&W. I read many gun magazines on how this fine weapon should be carried. All the while forgetting Jeff Cooper's famous statement: Unless a gun has a round chambered in it, it is useless. To think I believed in the 1990s gun magazines over Mr. Coopers statement. I was taught Mr. Cooper's mindset while in the military. 12 years mind you and I qualified expert during each year to boot. Treat all weapons as if they were loaded! Yet, the gun magazines, mostly retired civilian police, who preached civilians should carry a fully loaded magazine and NO round in the chamber, O.K. One day, I went to the gun store and purchased a Hogue slip on grip for my Glock. When I returned home, I retrieved my Glock with the knowledge that it has a loaded magazine with NO round in the chamber. I removed the magazine and proceeded to place the new slip-on grip, done. The grip was awesome it looked and felt nice. I looked at the wall clock and thought to myself, I have time to dissemble, clean and lube my Glock. Now for those of you real gun professionals, gun editors, who preach a lot of good stuff, I think not. I got into the false habit of thinking since I carry NO round in the chamber there was NO reason to check the chamber. I removed the magazine and the second thing one has to do prior to dissembling a Glock is squeeze the trigger. This releases the firing pin, so that the slide pins can be pulled downward and the upper slide removed. After squeezing the trigger and to my surprise, the Glock loudly discharged inside my Condo. I can assure anyone who has never experienced this the mind instantly replays the moment in slow motion, what?! The round made a small hole through the window blind. Yes, the round flatten after making another small hole through the glass window, striking the metal screen window. The metal screen window caused the round to flatten and spiral upward. If I were criminal, I would not have called the local police department to report this as an accidental discharge. Some of you pros call this AD, ya right. I took responsibility for my actions and called the local police department. I won't go into all the police details. I will say this: the police officer, who responded was very level headed and very understanding. I quote him: "we searched the condo complex and found no one injured nor did we find any damages to property, however if someone should call later, you can be charged with reckless endangerment." No one called later. I hear all the gun experts saying: "always check the chamber first." This, after they preached civilians should never chamber a round, only carry the weapon with a loaded magazine, this way is safer than a round in the chamber. Ya, right. Needless to say, I don't read any of today's useless gun magazine anymore, rather I practice military procedure taught to me. So, by now everyone is thinking how did that round get chambered? During the police investigation, my wife was contacted at her work and she was requested to come home. The prior night she had taken my Glock to look at it. While looking at it, she pulled the slide partially rearward peering into the chamber to see if a round were in the chamber, never thinking by doing so, she would chamber a round. Again, to all you expert civilian gun instructors... yes, she had taken a gun safety course. Yes, women are curious and just as fascinated as men are with weapons. As much as I loved my (third) Glock, I sold it to repair the window(s). I purchased a snub nosed revolver should my wife ever need to use it. I don't need to squeeze the trigger as part of the disassembly procedure as is required by the Glock. Plus, I carry it fully loaded and treat it as such. I no longer think the way I learned from the 1990s gun magazine civilians, who wrote civilians should carry a pistol with no round in the chamber, but with a fully loaded magazine. The best training is military training. They are the true professionals.

Well J Paul Ouelette, I'm calling BS on your entire post. I was in the U.S Marines in the 1st Battallion, 3rd Marine Regiment. You say you have 12 years of military experience correct? And you broke the cardinal rule of firearms handling. Your either a lying fool or complete idiot. Learn how to handle a firearm son!

(I'm posting a comment here which I posted at
http://sleepless.blogs.com/george/2006/03/accidental_hand.html#comment-16415950 before I saw you mentioned the Philadelphia shooting here.)

Thought you might be interested in the AP story on the accidental shooting in 2002 of a child by a Philadelphia police officer doing "show-and-tell" with what is said to be a 9mm Glock, in a scenario where the officer grabbed for a dropped gun.

"Principal Francine Fulton said Carter-Moragne had just put the clip back in the gun when she dropped the weapon. It was unclear whether the gun fired when it hit the floor or when the officer retrieved it, police said Thursday. Some students said Carter-Moragne dropped the gun before replacing the clip and that it fired while she was reloading it." (from AP)

The original AP story, which I'm posting below, did not mention the make of the gun, but an editorial at http://www.temple-news.com/media/paper143/news/2002/02/14/Opinion/Editorial.No.Guns.No.Exceptions-184072.shtml, in the student paper of Philadelphia's Temple University, says it was a "9mm Glock semi-automatic pistol."

From http://www.philadelphiaweekly.com/view.php?id=140:
"Philadelphia Police carry comparatively wimpy-sounding 9mm Glock 17 pistols. But 'bigger isn't necessarily better,' says Sgt. Norman Davenport of the Philadelphia Police Department's Lethal and Protective Weapons Unit. 'If PATCO says they've got the better gun, you've gotta ask how it performs. The Glock 17 will outperform the .40-caliber Glock.'"

February 7, 2002

HEADLINE: 10-Year-Old Grazed by Bullet

BYLINE: JOANN LOVIGLIO; Associated Press Writer


The gun of an off-duty police officer accidentally went off as she spoke to her child's fourth-grade class, firing a bullet that grazed the cheek of a 10-year-old boy.

The boy, James Reeves, was treated and released from a hospital following Wednesday's incident.

Officer Vanessa Carter-Moragne, 39, was reassigned to desk duty pending an investigation. Police Commissioner Sylvester Johnson declined to discuss disciplinary action but acknowledged the officer could lose her job.

Carter-Moragne's child was among the 23 fourth-graders in the class at the Imani Education Circle Charter School. Officials said she let the students see the gun and clip and let them pass the gun around.

Principal Francine Fulton said Carter-Moragne had just put the clip back in the gun when she dropped the weapon. It was unclear whether the gun fired when it hit the floor or when the officer retrieved it, police said Thursday.

Some students said Carter-Moragne dropped the gun before replacing the clip and that it fired while she was reloading it.

The charter school, which is run by a community board of directors, was cordoned off Wednesday afternoon and treated as a crime scene as parents arrived to pick up their children.

Tim Williams said he heard about a shooting on the news and rushed to the school to pick up his son Armani, a kindergartner.

"It's too close for comfort," he said.

Children from the same school were involved in an incident last week in which a substitute bus driver allegedly threatened unruly students, saying he had a weapon and ordering them to keep quiet. Police stopped the bus and found the 58-year-old driver with a 9 mm semiautomatic gun.

The driver, who had a permit for the weapon, was questioned by police but not charged.

I thiak anyone who has an "accidental discharge" does not know how to handle a gun. I admit i am not a police officer nor do i have any formal gun training other than the Handgun Safety Cert. required by California. What i do know is what the smart people here seem to be saying... ALWAYS ASSUME THE GUN IS LOADED!!! I have been taught, by my father (who has had a gun or rifle since he was 12), to always check the chamber. Any person who does not is begging for trouble. Common sense people!!!

All firearms without exception are made safe as follows:

1, the feed device is either removed or emptied in the firearm

2, the breech mechanism is locked open exposing the chamber

3, this procedure is effective for handguns, rifles, shotguns, machinegines and larger caliber arms.

The femaile police officer in the article did NOT follow the above procedure.

4, For self defence always chamber a round above a loaded magazine in those firearms with such a capability

5, Always assume all firearms are loaded and control them accordingly

Obviously, some people who are supposed to be in control of their firearms were NOT.

Firearms are NOT cute, awsome or sexy. They are boringly simply adiabatic devices that require boringly simple safety precautions every time, all the time, without exception.

Echoing what so many others have said, observing basic gun handling rules will prevent the unintended discharges you describe above; external safeties will not.

I did want to address a couple of points that seem to have been left alone. You mention S&W autos can't be fired with the magazine removed. IMHO, and that of many others, such a feature is not suitable for a defensive firearm. If you are relying on a gun to protect you, you must be able to fire the gun even in the middle of a reload. This feature would be appropriate for a target pistol with no defensive purpose.

Also, you predict a trend of "accidental discharges" of police officers' guns involving GLOCKs. However, you posit in the beginning of your piece that GLOCK dominates the police market (you are correct, GLOCK has 65%+ of the law enforcement market). Obviously, if one gun is carried by 2 out of 3 police officers, it will be more likely to be involved in "accidental discharges," as well as intentional shootings, malfunctions, etc. The statisic is not meaningful unless placed in the context of GLOCK's law enforcement market dominance.

Glocks DO NOT have a very light trigger pull as mentioned in the article but rather one that is much firmer than other handguns. This is exactly the reason why they are not used for competition target shooting (the extra pressure needed to depress the trigger is a disadvantage). And how it it difficult to tell if a round is in the chamber? By slightly pulling the action back the round is plainly visible. All guns are dangerous and no one has any business picking them up unless they are properly trained. GUNS DON'T KILL PEOPLE... PEOPLE KILL PEOPLE!

All you have to remeber is one simple thing. Any and every gun is loaded, (most cases just as they should be) and will fire until you have checked the chamber to prove otherwise! Assumptions are the mother of all f*c* up's. Bet that!

Btw, One last tip, drop the clip then pull the slide. Then why not pull it agin just to double check?

The Glock 23 and the other models are good and perfected. As far as saftey "DO NOT TOUCH TRIGGER UNTIL READY TO FIRE". daah......... I want to thank all our armed forces soldiers for protecting us here at home. Our country the U.S.A. was started with the right to bear arms and the Holy Bible as a foundation of Jesus Christ as our strength and saviour. NONE OF THID MUSLIM CRAP!!!! WE do not want it here their Alla is B.S. and antichrist SO GET OUT OF HERE !!!

i am a gun enthusiast, but there is a measure of risk involved by not having a way to check the chamber, and no manual saftey. yes always treat it like its loaded, never put finger near the trigger unless ready to shoot, but other things can pull the trigger, a branch, a fumble with the gun, if your a cop or homeowner in a hurry. also its good when cleaning a gun as an added measure of saftey. i can definitly se situations where the glock can be dangerous no matter how trained you are. and some people simply are brainless like bringing a loaded glock to a gun education program, and acting pompus/carless. check out this idiot, these kids are lucky they didn't get shot or hit with riccochet.
love you all

sorry link didnt post. and obviously this guy is an idiot, thats not my argument

Thanks for the link to that video of the DEA guy accidentally shooting himself, Dan. I had forgotten about that. That stunt will follow that poor guy for the rest of his life. But it was certainly a teaching lesson for the rest of us.

To Mike dated March 11 2006: W-o-w, because you're a Marine, you think you're an expert, who never ever had a discharge. Guess what old man, real men like you don't think like you and most of all, you can't handle the truth. Truth is there have been numerous accounts of Glock discharges with-in many Police Departments, but the truth will never be told. It's called the Brotherhood of Police silence. Yes, it's even in the Marines. Firearm discharge incidents are classified internal documents, which the public are not privy to read. But then, Marine Mike believes in religion... cardinal rule? Well Mike, I also worked for Purolator Armored after I ETS in 1977 and I witnessed a much older Marine forget to eject ALL the cartridges from a Mossberg 12 gauge shotgun at the clearing barrel and stupid yes, but he squeezes the trigger only to find himself sitting on his ass and my slowly taking the weapon away from his wide-eyed in shock facial expression of disbelief, it couldn't happen to me look. I didn't have to correct him, because he was a Marine, who knew t-h-e cardinal rule. To think, someone loaded several more cartridges and never told anyone they did so. Hell, those extra cartridges were in the shotgun each time it went out on a different route with different armed guards and yet not one armed (Former Military) guard ever checked for extra cartridges! Oh, I don't care that you served in the U.S Marines, 1st Battalion, 3rd Marine Regiment. You can't even spell check Battalion moron. I was in Topic Lighting, 25th Inf Div. Charlie Company, Forward Support 725th Maint BN. I also served in the Air Force Security Police 103rd WSSF and last as a AGR Supply Sgt for Hq and Hqrs Co. 126th Avn Regt Air Assault, were I was formerly the Armorer and I CAN BOAST about receiving the Army Achievemnet medal 2nd award for weapons maintenance... jackass.

What part of the disassembling of a GLOCK don't any of you experts understand... YOU HAVE TO SQUEEZE THE TRIGGER TO RELEASE THE COCKED FIRING PIN, then you can begin the disassembly process.

The two rules of gun safety that I have ALWAYS followed and that have served me well for over 50 years including 3 years military service are very simple and timeless:



Here is an article from PoliceOne that shows why you MUST ALWAYS follow the 2 rules just stated by the prior poster (L. Wilson). It is entitled "Why are we killing ourselves: A look at accidental shootings of police officers by police officers". Over 20 incidents described, most of them caused by someone pulling the trigger without first clearing the weapon. http://www.policeone.com/police/products/articles/116587

J. Paul Ouellette: Well I have a new story for you. I fell your pain man. I just got back from the pistol range and have to say I'm pretty shook up. First I have to say my son is much more an expert with pistols than I am and we both just got our pistol permits withen the past 2 months. He has quite a few hours of practice at the range with a number of differnt firearms. We of course both took the training required in getting our permits and I have shot pistols for years. As far as marksmanship my son is far better than I am as I have a tendency to wonder a bit. He recently purchased a new 9mm Glock that he was shooting for the second time today. Now I don't know if it was me handing him a gun that I had shot only 4 out of five rounds out of or if it was his error but this is what went down. He has been carrying the glock so after our shooting practice he popped back in the loaded clip and pulled the trigger thinking there was no bullet in the chamber. Bang off went the gun shooting a hole in the carpet a few feet away from me. Needless to say we were both shocked and very glad he had it facing the floor when he did so. This model only has a very small stub that sticks out slightly from the right hand side of the frame not enough warning if you ask me. His sig has a much larger lever that sticks up from the top and is much more obvious. Now there is no doubt that the fault was his but I don't like the fact that the gun has no external hammer like his sig or my colt 1911 gold cup. Accidents do happen period. Even a very experianced shooter can have an accident. I just believe a gun should have a bit more warning to the user that there is around in the chamber. When it's small and hidden on the side of the gun facing away from you I don't think it's sufficent. Of course all you glock lovers can now jump all over me but I believe Mr.Ouellette has a point to make.

Mr. Schrameck, the "bit more warning to the user that there is a round in the chamber" was there all the time. It's called YOUR SON. Tell him it's called, RACK THE SLIDE AND LOOK. My strong suspicion is he "popped back in the loaded clip and pulled the trigger" with one round still in the chamber as "expert" as he may be. People causes some accidents just like some accidents causes people. Nevertheless, I'm glad to read there were no injuries. By the way, YES, I'm a Glock owner and have been fifteen years with no mishaps. But I do understand what it takes for one.

Mr Epperson: Everyone is entitled to their own opinion. You could have made yours without the snyde comments. Of course as a Glock owner you must be above the normal need for manners or tact. The fault was with him, AS I STATED. However a tiny nub sticking out of the right side of the gun facing away from you is not enough warning that there is one in the chamber.

If the trigger of a Glock is in the forward position assume that there is a round in the chamber until proven otherwise by pulling back the slide and checking the chamber. This is a very easy way to see or feel with your finger (behind the trigger!) that there may be a round in the chamber.
If the trigger is in the rear position the gun will not fire unless the slide is racked.

Rob: Thanks for the infomation. My son does not carry the glock anymore, as he had originally purchased it, and was carrying it until a friend of his got his carry permit. Your advise was both constructive and informative,and much appreciated.

I was recently the victim of an accidental shooting and feel strongly that had it been any other gun than a Glock, it wouldn't have happened. My husband is a former marine, NRA safety instructor and very experienced handgunner. In the wee hours of the morning, we heard a disturbance downstairs. He reached for the gun on the night table. As he sat up, the gun got caught in the down comforter - enough to press that light 4 pound trigger. The bullet went into the comforter and blankets - and hit my left hand before exiting the bedroom window. The blankets caused the round to stovepipe. If the gun had a heavier trigger or a safety, I would not be enduring multiple surgeries to put my hand back together. I am lucky to be alive.
Should my husband have gotten up and out of the bed first? Yes. But it happens in a split second and with adrenaline rushing through you, it is too easy to make a small but deadly mistake.

Rialto: Hope your hand is getting better.Don't be too hard on then old man, if the safety wasn't built into the trigger, the accident might not have happened.

why not carry a 1911 cocked and unlocked???? why not park your car by finding a flat place, leaving the parking brake off, motor running and the transmission in neutral.

what is the difference? Glock started the whole trigger safety frenzy and now there are more guns without manual safety that with them. Kind of scary for me, but I have only been shooting and handling guns for 40 years. I have owned a glock or two, over the years and for the range, I did not have a problem with it, but carrying one with a chambered round even in a holster makes me kind of nevous.

Have been carrying a Glock 23,27,30, and 21. I carried with a trigger block for almost a year so I would have a habit of never putting my booger hook in the trigger area. I carry holstered and always chambered. I clean my guns often and have never come close to shooting myself or anyone else. I check and double check before dis-assembly. You do have to pull the trigger to take it apart but after you have racked it back far enough to see if there is a bullet in the chamber. Glocks are one of the safest pistols I know of. Part of a gun being safe is the ability to use it when needed. My bass player is a police officer and I know many others. They don't all carry Glocks but all think they are fine ugly guns. My Glocks are ugly but they are safe and they work all the time every time.

i personaly own three glocks and i can tell you right now from experince any gun can be just as dangerous as the next no matter if thier is a safety on it or not. certain considerations need to be taken with certain guns but overall guns arent a damn toy serious percautions need to be taken for example, anytime you hand a gun off to someone ensure thier isnt a round in the chamber and no magazine in the mag weld!. And i hear this all to often at gun ranges and in the military act like your weapon is loaded at all times, meaning having muzzle awareness and muzzle disipline. second your finger should never be on the trigger unless if its pointed at whatever it is your going to shoot at no point in time is that weapon supposed to be pointed at anyone in any form or fashion unless if its your target. the main problem that people have with shooting themselves or letting people shoot themselves is complacency never get complacent around something that can easily take a life or seriously hurt someone.

I love my Ruger P90. It is one of the first ones build and has been loaded in my right front pocket for so many years I can’t remember. Its safety is a hard first pull then I get 6 hair trigger pulls. The first pull has the perfect tension to where no one could accidentally pull it yet all seven bullets always drop in a very nice pattern. The first pull has no effect on the pattern. I keep looking at the Glock because of the 16 rounds. I can not see how such a weapon is safe in any situation. I think I would have a better chance of shooting my leg off than ever using it in a defensive situation. Anyone carrying a Glock around with a bullet in the chamber is an idiot. Then again if you carried it unchambered you would be down before you could get it loaded. I see nothing but loose, loose satiations with that gun.

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