SAIRO & I - RANGE OFFICER
1. WHAT TYPES OF PEOPLE BECOME SUCCESSFULL A RANGE OFFICERS
It must be accepted that not all shooters are necessarily suitable material to become a Range Officer. Firstly, it should be the candidate’s desire to become a Range Officer. Peer pressure and the mere fact that the person was nominated by his/her club is not sufficient motivation, and usually leads to an unmotivated Range Officer within a short period.
A candidate should have at least the following attributes:
· Leadership. This is an aggressive sport where the weak and timid are not often found.
· Experienced as a competitor in the sport.
· A reasonable knowledge of firearms and a basic knowledge of ballistics.
· The ability (and willingness) to convey knowledge to others.
· Safety consciousness and the ability to foresee when a dangerous situation may arise.
· Willingness to make the sacrifice as an active participant; not only to put in the additional time and effort required, but also to accept that this is to a greater or lesser extent to the detriment of his/her own shooting/performance.
· The ability to handle “difficult” situations firmly yet diplomatically. (Safety always comes first.)
· The ability to apply the knowledge obtained from studying the I.P.S.C. rules in a practical manner.
2. PROCEDURE TO BE FOLLOWED TO QUALIFY AS A RANGE OFFICER:
· A person of suitable potential is nominated by the club to the Provincial Association as trainee Range Officer.
· The candidate then serves an “apprenticeship” under a qualified Range Officer at his/her club or province.
· During this apprenticeship the candidate must attend and work at local leagues in his/her capacity as trainee, under supervision of qualified Range Officers.
· After accumulating at least 16 match points (8 x leagues at 2 points per league):
a. The candidate attends a Range Officer’s course conducted by either SAIRO & I or the provincial Range Officer’s body, which is concluded with a written examination for which the pass mark is 80%, and
b. Is examined in the practical aspects of the sport, on the range during a league or higher level shoot by a Chief Range Officer. The provincial Range Officer’s body then decides whether the candidate is competent to be an RO, and advises the provincial association to that effect.
c. The provincial association informs SAIRO & I accordingly and the new Range Officer is put on the register for qualified Range Officers, and is also issued with the appropriate certificate and insignia.
d. The above requirements may be amended from time to time.
3. TYPES OF RANGE OFFICERS IN OUR SPORT
· Trainee Range Officer (TRO) Red shirt.
· Range Officer (RO) Red shirt.
· Stats Officer (SO) Red shirt.
· Chief Range Officer (CRO) Red shirt.
· Range Master (RM) Red shirt.
· Range Officer (RO) Grey shirt, equivalent to National CRO.
· Stats Officer (SO) Grey shirt.
· Chief Range Officer (CRO) Grey shirt.
· Range Master (RM) Grey shirt.
4. DUTIES OF THE RANGE OFFICER
· The RO is there to brief all of the competitors on the requirements of the particular stage and to answer questions that could lead to misinterpretations of the course designer’s intention.
· The RO should be seen by the competitors as someone who will help them rather than punish them.
· The RO should have patience, understanding and the ability to listen to the competitors just as much as he/she wants the competitors to listen to him/her.
· Once the RO and competitors are ready to start the stage, then he/she must take and maintain control of all the competitors and spectators alike.
· Safety is of prime importance in our sport and should at all times override all other considerations.
· The RO must be impartial, fair and consistent in order to maintain the same standard throughout the match.
· The RO have to do whatever possible in his power to ensure that every competitor gets the chance to shoot the stage in the same conditions. (i.e. Quiet spectators, painted plates, patched targets) The RO may ask the competitors to help him with these duties.
· Just remember the RO is representing the host club, province or country where ever he/she work and have certain responsibilities.
5. OBJECTIVES OF THE RANGE OFFICER
· Firearms must be pointed in a safe direction at all times.
· No firearm may be un-holstered except on the line under RO instruction or in a safety area.
· A RO must see to it that all firearms are clear before leaving the line.
· Firearms must be holstered and carried in a safe manner at all times.
· No alcohol or drugs are allowed on the range.
· The trigger finger must be outside the trigger guard during re-loads, any remedial action or movement if the competitor is not actually shooting at targets.
· Steel targets must not be shot at distances closer than 10 meters.
· Spectators should be kept at a safe distance behind the start line at all times.
The RO is like a partner who assists the competitor through the course of fire safely.
· Explains the course of fire clearly and concisely.
· Explains the scoring method used and possible penalties.
· Defines the firing positions, fault lines and charge lines.
· Explains range commands.
· Treats all competitors fairly and equally.
· Always be firm but fair.
· Invites any questions.
Lets us remember why we do this sport, it is because we like it and it is loads of fun.
· It is RO’s responsibility to design and construct good challenging shoots that is a lot of fun to shoot.
· RO’s must present the stage to the competitors so that they want to come back to our club, province or country because they enjoyed it so much the last time they were here.
· Make it worth the while for the competitors, they are after all your customers for the time they spend on your stage.
Practical shooting is fun to watch.
· Try not to place the spectators so far away that they cannot see the action.
· Allow people with cameras to stand closer, but try to keep them out of harms way where possible.
· Even try to explain the course of fire with interested spectators. Take caution not to discuss scenarios with them.
· Do not mistake cheering with coaching.
6. RANGE OFFICER ATTITUDE & QUALITIES
· Firm yet fair.
· The RO is in control.
· Always treat people the way that you want to be treated.
· Greet the new squad in a friendly manner on arrival to your stage.
· Introduce yourself and any assistants working with you on the stage.
· Possible intimidation by a competitor is always handled gently, quietly and firmly.
· Do not let a competitor get into control of a situation.
· You are in control and always strive to be firm and fair.
· If in doubt ask. Call the CRO, RM or even a more experienced RO next door, you will never be on your own.
· RO intimidation is also possible.
· Try not to position yourself as to hamper any necessary movement or interfere with the peripheral vision of the competitor.
· If the competitor asks you to move back, do so as long as you can still retain effective control.
· Do not comment on a competitor’s faults, mishaps or bad luck during a stage. Some competitors take offence.
· You need to want to be a RO.
· It is very important to be able to maintain a good attitude even under bad circumstances.
· If you loose your temper easily or quickly irritated…. Think twice about becoming a RO.
· You must have a good knowledge of the IPSC rules and regulations.
· It helps to have a broad knowledge of firearms, ammunition and reloading.
· There is no substitute for good communication skills.
· You must treat everyone the same – firm and fair.
· Do not even allow the perception of favouritism. This is extremely important when handling “super squads” or “wannabe squads”.
· Always be consistently calm, confident and efficient.
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