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Sig Sauer: Firearms training academy aims for safety

Union Leader Correspondent

April 09. 2017 8:06PM

EPPING — A representative from Sig Sauer Academy insists that the firearms training facility that’s popular with law enforcement, military and civilians takes steps aimed at preventing accidental shootings like one last week.

Adam A. Painchaud, the academy’s vice president, said incidents are “extremely rare” and that the facility is prepared to handle them.

Emergency personnel were called to the facility at 233 Exeter Road late Wednesday morning after a man participating in civilian training accidentally shot himself in his lower right calf while holstering his gun, according to police.

He was rushed to Portsmouth Regional Hospital with what police authorities described as non-life threatening injuries.

Another civilian student suffered an accidental gunshot wound to the leg during training in January 2016.

While accidental shootings don’t happen often, Epping Fire Chief Don DeAngelis recalled responding to at least a few over the past several years.

“We have comprehensive safety measures in place to handle potential emergencies. Additionally, we take great precaution to mitigate injuries from happening in the first place,” Painchaud said.

According to Painchaud, all of the academy’s instructors, at a minimum, have been formally trained to handle and treat medical emergencies.

He said the facility also has several emergency medical technicians, paramedics, and special operations medics on staff.

“These types of incidents are extremely rare. We take great pride in our safety record and continuously look for ways to improve our response and incident mitigation,” he said.

Sig Sauer opened its Epping facility under its former name, Sigarms Academy, after purchasing the Exeter Road site in 1996 to build the first non-toxic, frangible indoor range.

The academy has expanded over the years by adding more ranges and infrastructures, which now include a maritime training area, a tactical training area, multiple shoothouses, the only 1,000-yard range in New England that’s publicly accessible, and a 360-degree range, according to its website.

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