An incident has been brought to my attention concerning the malfunction of .22 caliber ammunition involving multiple target rifles on a single 4-H range. This initial incident occurred in Val Verde County with their 4-H Shooting Sports program run by volunteer Gary Humphreys. The Eley Sport .22 rimfire ammunition caused damage by minor explosions to multiple rifles while being shot. No human injuries were sustained. A similar incident occurred in Kinney County. The Eley Sport ammunition involved came from lot numbers 031209011 and 061209008purchased in October 2010. Gary Humphreys is currently in contact with Eley Ammunition in San Antonio. Eley is picking up all of the remaining ammunition from the lots in question to test for malfunctions. We plan to hear from them following their investigation and will pass that information along when it becomes available. Gary Humphreys is running point on this incident since it occurred on his range. He welcomes any contact if anyone has questions concerning similar issues with the same brand of ammunition (830/703-0826; email@example.com)
In the meantime, the State 4-H Office is asking any 4-H program that may be using Eley Sport .22 caliber rimfire ammunition (especially ammunition from the lot numbers listed above) to cease use of that ammunition until further information is available from the manufacturer. It is further recommended to cease use of other Eley ammunition if similar incidents have occurred within a program and to take seriously any type of ammunition malfunction and not to disregard it as merely a single incident. Keep track of ammunition and firearm malfunctions to be able to recognize a pattern and head off any greater potential mishaps. In regards to other brands of ammunition used, it may be advisable to contact the manufacturer of your ammunition to inquire about any recalls or issues with that specific ammunition in use by a 4-H program. This type of contact may also be advisable to the manufacturer of rifles used in a 4-H program to determine the same.
Please do not hesitate to contact the 4-H Natural Resources Office if questions or concerns arise at 979-845-1214. As it is with you, the safety of our 4-H’ers and adult leaders across the state is paramount in the 4-H Shooting Sports program. This is no small incident and as such is taken very seriously.