Lead Poisoning?
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Old 03-09-2010, 06:38 PM   #1
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Default Lead Poisoning?

If this thread is in the wrong section, please move it mods.

A scary thought just popped in to my head as I realized my stupidity.

This last weekend, a few friends and I went out and shot about 300 rounds of .22 to .44 into targets, using the hillside as a backdrop. However, this hillside is actually the top embankment of a small natural stream that runs through the land. Should I get a back-ho in there and scoup all of the hillside out that has the lead bullets in it? I guess I'm worried about the lead leeching into the stream and affecting wildlife.

Maybe I'm too paranoid?

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Old 03-09-2010, 07:06 PM   #2
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here is some good read if your concerned with lead leaching. You would have to shoot a hell of a lot more then a few hundres rounds for this to be a concern.

http://www.lead.org.au/fs/shootingranges.pdf

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Old 03-09-2010, 07:21 PM   #3
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Paranoid? No. Could it eventually be a potential problem? Yes.

Here is some more information that may help.

http://www.epa.gov/Region2/waste/leadshot/epa_bmp.pdf

Jack

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Old 03-09-2010, 08:33 PM   #4
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It partially depends on the soil type. Clay soil does not allow the migration of the lead at any appreciable rate. You can shoot hundreds of thousands of rounds into a clay berm with little chance of leaching.

You also have to understand that lead is not water soluble. Very little lead will come off the bullets into the soil. The lead can sit there for many centuries with very little change in weight change. Look at the Civil War bullets that have been recovered from various battlefields. They look pretty much like they did when fired over 100 years prior. Lead is not like steel that will rust away to nothing in a few years.

The lead molecule is a rather large one. It does not filter down through the soil very well.

In all, do not sweat it.

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Old 03-09-2010, 08:56 PM   #5
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Thanks for the quick feedback and the informative reads.

*puts away bobcat*

I'll find a better backstop for the shooting next time.

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Old 03-09-2010, 09:02 PM   #6
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It's all good!

Just don't tell Spotted Al Gore!

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Old 03-10-2010, 10:40 PM   #7
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My friends and i usually do our target shooting in a large clay pit with high clay walls. I had not considered "leeching" and am glad to hear it shouldn't be a major problem with the clay. Of course, the area we use is near a number of closed & open oil wells, so it's probably screwed anyway, environmentally-wise.

good thread

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Old 03-10-2010, 11:22 PM   #8
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I was under the impression that it was not large pieces of lead that were a concern. I understood that is was very small particles as well as dust and fumes. Especially a problem with indoor ranges. I am certainly not a doctor or a scientist. As a matter of fact, I don't know why any of you would listen to me. LOL

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Old 03-10-2010, 11:32 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by robocop10mm View Post
It partially depends on the soil type. Clay soil does not allow the migration of the lead at any appreciable rate. You can shoot hundreds of thousands of rounds into a clay berm with little chance of leaching.

You also have to understand that lead is not water soluble. Very little lead will come off the bullets into the soil. The lead can sit there for many centuries with very little change in weight change. Look at the Civil War bullets that have been recovered from various battlefields. They look pretty much like they did when fired over 100 years prior. Lead is not like steel that will rust away to nothing in a few years.

The lead molecule is a rather large one. It does not filter down through the soil very well.

In all, do not sweat it.
That is A+ 100% correct right there.

I was looking into lead removal at the range I shoot at and am the Chairman of. From the research and from talking to people. I have heard the exact same thing from them.
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Old 03-10-2010, 11:35 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by canebrake View Post
It's all good!

Just don't tell Spotted Al Gore!

Or Dennis Kucinich. He thinks that the Coast Guard should not do any live fire practice because it puts lead right into the water ways.
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