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ddubois

Unfortunate issue at Cub Scout Day Camp, seeking advice

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Report everything to the Camp Director.  No E-mails!!!!   Ink to paper, sent Certified Mail, return receipt requested is the only way to go for something like this!!!  Do it today!

 

"We didn't get your e-mail" is a convenient dodge.  A green postcard returned to you with a signature is the only way to go.  $5 well spent.  CYA, as they say. :)

 

If you don't get a response within 7 days, contact the Scout Executive, by phone AND Certified Mail.  An issue like this is a serious safety issue which I'm certain the council will investigate right away.  It's not your job to point out the safety shortcomings, range officer qualifications, etc.  That is the job of the council, let them do their job.  You may be asked to file a claim with your own insurance company for the time being.  If so, do it.  The two companies can work out the issues, and you'll get your glass fixed.

 

And, of course, I'd suggest parking somewhere else from now on!  :)

 

Thank you for your service at CSDC, volunteers are often hard to find.

Edited by frankpalazzi
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 An issue like this is a serious safety issue which I'm certain the council will investigate right away.  It's not your job to point out the safety shortcomings, range officer qualifications, etc.  That is the job of the council, let them do their job.

 

It's not his job, but something to take note of. 

 

Just like a traffic accident, one should get as much information (names, dates, pictures, etc.) to show potential negligence that someone might try to cover up after the fact.

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My wife finally got a reply from the council's Program Director:

 

Xxxxxx,

Thank you for your e-mail. I was out at Camp Xxxxxx when you sent the e-mail and did not have a chance to reply back to you timely as there is no service there.

 

We have investigated the incident, and we cannot determine the cause of the window being broken in the parking lot. I have spoken to both the Camp Director from camp and the Range Officer whom worked at camp at length, whom each indicate that they were present that day and that they could not determine how it occurred or what had caused the window to be damaged. I also spoke to you onsite at camp on June 13, when I visited there and I could not determine the possible source. You indicated you were having your window replaced under your insurance.

 

Xxxxxx Xxxxxx who was the RSO for camp,  is currently heading out of town to his Troops Summer Camp and said he will contact me when he returns. He stated to me earlier today when we spoke via phone that he was the person in charge of the Ranges at all times during camp, and that at no time did any incident(s) occur where any unsafe activity took place that could have caused damage to a vehicle as a result of the range operation. I can forward a copy of the report once received.

Thank you,

Xxxxxx Xxxxxx 
 

I'm disappointed, but not surprised.  I think it really short-sighted to play the "you can't prove it was our fault" game.  Were I in their shoes, I would hope that I would see it's so much easier to pay the $300 and keep the good will of someone who volunteers as much as I do.  Our last Troop sold over $4000 worth of popcorn, and that was entirely my doing; they would not have partaken had I not convinced them and organized everything, and I've already volunteered to be Popcorn Kernel and Membership Chair for my district, within months of my move within this council from one district to another.

 

The comment about "replaced under your insurance" bothers me too.  They're weasel words designed to weaken our position, as if insurance makes up for our harm.  We paid for it out of pocket, because driving around for days or weeks with a missing window is obviously not an option - it rains a lot here.  I'm sure going to Geico about this would be a waste of time, with deductibles and the ensuing rate hike.

 

This is a picture of the damage:

19179688_10212217158680869_1956221843_o.

 

For what it's worth, the "hole" area of the glass didn't fall in at the time of the initial damage, it collapsed later, when my unobservant children closed the door after retrieving something from the car.

 

Initially, I had some doubt about the ability of a BB to damage a car window, and wondered where the range was.  But when I went on site and saw where the range was located - it was diagonally adjacent to the parking lot, with "down range" running parallel to the parking lot - all my doubt was removed.  I think it fair to say 90% odds the initial shattering was from a BB gun.  Tempered glass like this is much more likely to break from pinpoint pressure, than from a blunt hit from something like a hammer or a fist.

 

Also, I've talked to the RSO, and "at no time did any incident(s) occur where any unsafe activity took place that could have caused damage to a vehicle" is over-stating his position.  He told me he saw nothing unusual or suspicious or indicative; but I'm sure he wouldn't go out on that logical limb and say unequivocally that certainly nothing happened; that would be like proving a negative.  It bothers me the program director used such absolute language.

 

So... if you were me, would you give up at this point, or should l pressure council harder to make this right?

Edited by ddubois

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If down range is parallel to the parking lot then the range should not be operating!

 

If you really want satisfaction then read the range sports manual and find the violations this range has. Then hand that over to a lawyer and have him contact council to get your money.

 

Don't expect council to step up and do the right thing.

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Me?  I would just get the window fixed and then stop all FOS contributions until the cost has been met.  No drama, no hassle, no paperwork, no lawyers, no discussions with other scouters/council.

 

I seriously doubt there's some Cub Scout out there that deliberately shot out the window.  If he did, he wouldn't fess up to it anyway.

 

Just smile nice, be polite and tally the costs against contributions and be done with it.

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I agree with Stosh.  I still think the range master (and camp director) setup the range in the wrong place.

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I agree with Stosh.  I still think the range master (and camp director) setup the range in the wrong place.

That issue still needs to be addressed.

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That issue still needs to be addressed.

 

Probably, but it has nothing to do with the broken window.  Even if the range was set up correctly, a stray shot could have gone off in any one of 360o's.  Or up for that matter.  It is a rather convenient excuse to blame the BB gun range. But who's to say it had anything to do with a BB gun and/or range placement.  Unless the ATF does an investigation, an unsupervised kid throwing a rock in the parking lot could have done the same thing.  Better yet a slingshot works great for getting into trouble.

 

No witnesses, no evidence, just speculation and assumption.  Not much to go on.

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If there's no witnesses then you can't say it has nothing to do with the broken window. As you say, it's conjecture and assumptions either way. But if you don't follow set procedures for a firing range the probability of an accident goes up.

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Yeah, you can shoot your eye out with those BB guns.

 

I think the point is that if the range violated the shooting sports guidelines that the chance of a kid aiming 30 degrees right (on purpose or not) is a lot higher than if the parking lot is 180 degrees from down range. 

 

Can all those other things break windows? Sure. But the liklihood of a stray BB making it in to a lot adjacent to a range is much higher than if proper layout was followed. It does bear investigation.

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If BSA gets enough complaints about how Cub BB gun ranges are set up, BB guns will follow suit to squirt guns and that will solve the problem altogether.

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If BSA gets enough complaints about how Cub BB gun ranges are set up, BB guns will follow suit to squirt guns and that will solve the problem altogether.

 

So we don't hold a council's feet to the fire to follow the shooting sports manual for range safety? That makes no sense.

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So we don't hold a council's feet to the fire to follow the shooting sports manual for range safety? That makes no sense.

 

Yes, enforce the rules if one has to have rules, they are there for a reason.  BUT, in this case the rules weren't followed.  Now what does one do?  Obviously, the council cannot be held responsible for rogue leadership not following the rules.  Yes, the council was remiss in their enforcement of the rules because things go south when it happens. This incident should never have happened had the range been set up appropriately.  This time it was a car window, next time it could be a person.  Those setting up the range need to have their feet held to the fire and yes, the council should have done a cursory follow up to make sure safety was maximized.

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Yes, enforce the rules if one has to have rules, they are there for a reason.  BUT, in this case the rules weren't followed.  Now what does one do?  Obviously, the council cannot be held responsible for rogue leadership not following the rules.  Yes, the council was remiss in their enforcement of the rules because things go south when it happens. This incident should never have happened had the range been set up appropriately.  This time it was a car window, next time it could be a person.  Those setting up the range need to have their feet held to the fire and yes, the council should have done a cursory follow up to make sure safety was maximized.

 

Change "not following the range rules" to "not following YPT" or "not following age matrix" or "not following climbing safety rules" and tell me if this argument still holds water.

 

Council event. Council property. Council responsibility. I don't think it gets any clearer than that.

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