Drawstrings, Again

11-Mar-14 – 03:23 by ToddG

As I mentioned in 2012, drawstrings on concealment garments can be dangerous. Here’s a TV news segment about a police officer who sadly managed to shoot himself thanks to one:

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Train hard & stay safe! ToddG

  1. 26 Responses to “Drawstrings, Again”

  2. Great post and good on these guys for coming clean and honest about the real issue.

    By BaiHu on Mar 11, 2014

  3. Nice muzzling of the hand at 50 seconds with the (supposedly) empty 42 and 54 seconds with the definitely loaded 23.

    Bonus points for floptastic leather holster that muzzles the shooters leg at every re-holstering!

    Good on the sheriff for manning up and being willing to talk about this publicly but there’s more than just the never-seen-before-drawstring-ND at issue here.

    By Lomshek on Mar 11, 2014

  4. I couldn’t do that with my P30L (TDA)or my Ruger sr9c with a manual safety. My stance is that for me the likelihood of an accident is higher (despite being extremely cautious and vigilant) than the likelihood of my ever needing that extra .25 of a second it takes to flip the safety. I also enjoy the extra training it takes to become competent with a TDA. Obviously others will vigorously disagree.

    By Peter on Mar 11, 2014

  5. Did anyone check the chief’s hand for glazed doughnut residue?

    By John on Mar 11, 2014

  6. Lomshek,

    Nice muzzling of the hand at 50 seconds with the (supposedly) empty 42 and 54 seconds with the definitely loaded 23.

    I could not believe how cavalier he was about that, considering the chief put a bullet through his own paw that way some years back.

    By Tam on Mar 11, 2014

  7. Nice of the Chief to man up about it, but no mention of the fact that it never would have happened if he’d simply left the weapon in the holster, where it belonged. Based on his past history he doesn’t seem to have learned anything.

    By PKelly on Mar 11, 2014

  8. Also, great point on removing the drawstring from this type of garment. It’s the first thing I always do.

    By PKelly on Mar 11, 2014

  9. The shop owner needs to work on his 911 call skills. He needs to let them know it was a ND, so EMS arrives, not a tactical team.

    I this case it wasn’t critical, but if seconds counted and they thought it was a hot incident, it could be bad.

    By Mitchell, Esq. on Mar 11, 2014

  10. I’ve trained with the Marion County Oregon Deputy. He is a legit squared away dude. His drawstring discharge was a dangerous and freak “accident.”

    I can’t vouch for the Chief; after all he has shot himself before…but hats off to him for stepping up.

    By Matt on Mar 11, 2014

  11. This video brings up a question I’ve always had. What about the Glock trigger (the extra lever) is supposed to make it that much safer? Isn’t an event like this (something completely entering the trigger guard) much more likely than something rubbing against it without touching the front of the trigger?

    In any case, thanks for sharing this.

    By XKL on Mar 11, 2014

  12. @xkl, it is actually an inertia drop safety.

    By CCT125US on Mar 12, 2014

  13. I cut these off after reading the 2012 article. You deserve huge thanks for making this point.
    Also do a tight wrap on your under shirt so a flap does not stick into the trigger area.

    By 1slow on Mar 12, 2014

  14. This is one reason I am a big fan of a useable (1911 for me) manual safety. If you train with them the on and off becomes second nature. You don’t even think about it. Even if you cut off the drawstring there are always things that can get caught in there, even just parts of a shirt or other clothes. I have heard of more AD’s with Glocks then with any other gun, but there are also allot more of them out there then any other gun.

    And John, really? That’s your contribution?

    By Mark on Mar 12, 2014

  15. He never should have drawn a duty weapon for an unofficial purpose in the first place. He’s incompetent and def shouldn’t be a chief. He is obviously unconcerned with even basic firearms safety. He’s had 2 documented ND’s & who knows how many undocumented. I’m sure he’s also a big fan of Serpas & XD’s as well.

    By Wes on Mar 12, 2014

  16. Good video showing valid reasons for my concerns over the years…people holstering without looking down at their holster.

    Shirts, strings, and other loose items can get caught in the trigger guard and now we have proof of what can happen.

    Thanks for posting.

    By SecondsCount on Mar 12, 2014

  17. Pardon, but I get so tired of all the “professionals” saying “He never should have taken it from the holster.”

    Never? Ever? Under any circumstances?

    Perhaps what people mean to say is “He – or she – should train themselves to handle firearms safely, to include drawing and reholstering their weapons properly.”

    Frankly, the Chief has, I’m sure, been around firearms for ages and thought he was handling it correctly. In fact, he was. Not once did he place his finger in the trigger guard. It’s the unsafe clothing that’s the problem; every time I went on patrol wearing new-fangled looks-so-cool drawstring type jackets, I made sure to adjust the “draw” so that the string and the retaining clips were all located away from my weapons. Kinda like taping down your gear before heading into the bush so it won’t rattle and expose you to unwanted attention. After you’ve seen one person get tangled up while trying to draw . . .

    “Basic firearms safety”? The best safety routine is to never take a gun out of the retail display case in the first place, but if you must, put it in the arms room and never ever check it out. But then, that’s not what guns are for.

    By CarlS on Mar 12, 2014

  18. CarlS-
    He muzzled his palm with a gun…that’s pretty negligent/unsafe. Also, there’s a difference between what one does with their personally owned guns on their own time & a duty gun whilst on duty. Taking a loaded duty weapon out of a holster to look at it while at a LGS is irresponsible at best.

    I visually check my holster & gun for obstructions each and every time with a hard, intentional break after drawing/firing. He did not. It’s too late in the gun game for these kinds of mistakes.

    By Wes on Mar 12, 2014

  19. Frankly, the Chief has, I’m sure, been around firearms for ages and thought he was handling it correctly. In fact, he was.

    No, he was not.

    The guy muzzled his hands multiple times in that video, INCLUDING drawing the loaded G23 from his holster at 0:52. Furhter, he did that thing where you wallow the muzzle around to force it into the holster, pointing it directly at your own iliac crest in the process.

    You keep using that word “correctly”. I do not think it means what you think it means.

    By Tam on Mar 12, 2014

  20. Yes Mark, I went for the cheap cliche. I apologize.

    By John on Mar 12, 2014

  21. Watching the video it appeared that the chief noted a problem with his reholstering which precipitated the tugging on his garment. Once the “problem” was perceived he should have been much more careful and deliberate about what his problem was and what he was doing. He never even bothered to look and see what was happening until he shot himself.

    By John O on Mar 12, 2014

  22. Milwaukee PD had a discharge a few months ago from the exact same issue – guy in the locker room, gears up, and holsters. He was either walking up stairs or reaching for something (I’ve heard conflicting versions) and the drawstring on his jacket pulled the trigger.

    I’m pretty sure when it happens in the station it qualifies as a “desk pop.”

    By M Gallo on Mar 13, 2014

  23. “He never should have drawn a duty weapon for an unofficial purpose in the first place. He’s incompetent and def shouldn’t be a chief. He is obviously unconcerned with even basic firearms safety. He’s had 2 documented ND’s & who knows how many undocumented. I’m sure he’s also a big fan of Serpas & XD’s as well.

    Hey, now! :)
    OK, I switched from XD to Glock for several reasons, but one of the things I really liked about the XD’s much-maligned grip safety was the option to come off the grip a bit–putting your thumb on the back of the slide as if riding a hammer was enough–to put the gun on safe while holstering. It was a nice little security binky to have. The Glock demands that it be done right every single time, and I don’t mind doing it right, but . . .

    By Don Gwinn on Mar 13, 2014

  24. I don’t let logic get in the way of my tribal signaling, Don, so I don’t complain when others don’t, either. ;)

    By Tam on Mar 13, 2014

  25. My question is, Why did he feel the need to pull his loaded weapon to compare it to the other gun? Why couldn’t he just have had one pulled from the shelf, as if there wasn’t a Glock 23 in the store…Why is it that some cops feel the need to show off? I have seen this at gun stores before…”I am looking for a holster for gun XYZ” as they are pulling gun from holster. Keep the weapon holstered! What is so hard about that? Are you physically incapable of saying a firearm make and model? This sort of thing really irritates me to no end.

    By Lot2Learn on Mar 14, 2014

  26. Why is it that some cops feel the need to show off?

    It ain’t just cops.

    If I had a dollar for ever non-cop I’ve seen whip out their loaded gat in a gun store to (show it off/compare it to a gun in a showcase/check fit in a case or a holster) I could probably buy a decent used Glock 19, and I wish I could say I was exaggerating.

    By Tam on Mar 14, 2014

  27. On a further note . . . I thought I was pretty squared away on this. I might be slow, my thinking went, but I holster slowly and deliberately, and I’m careful to switch mindset, because I’m so scared of an ND.

    Then I did some force-on-force training with airsoft yesterday, and instead of my usual cover garment (a blazer over IWB) I was using their OWB paddle holster under a soft fleece jacket.* At first, I’m wearing it unzipped and flinging it aside like I’m IDPA Man coming to the rescue, but eventually I zipped it up ’cause I kept getting lit up. And then came the time when I holstered, started to move off, felt a tug at my jacket, and absent-mindedly tugged it free of the holster. It was apparently not entangled with the trigger, but the fabric was between holster and gun, and I’d felt zero resistance on holstering . . . and when I did notice, I didn’t even stop to check whether it was stuck in the holster, I just tugged it loose. If it’d been on a trigger, I’d likely have fired a round.

    There were in fact several ND’s, including a couple of early shots on early draw-to-target drills and one leg crease from holstering with finger on trigger. That one was done by someone who’d never worn gloves before.

    Being aware that anybody can screw this stuff up and hurt somebody badly is uncomfortable. But it’s OK to be uncomfortable.

    *You had your choice of SERPA or Sporter, but I just asked myself, what would The Tribe do? :D

    By Don Gwinn on Mar 17, 2014

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