Negligence Spurs Requirement For Pre-Safety Brief Risk Assessment
WASHINGTON, D.C. – The United States Army Combat Readiness and Safety Center is expected to issue an All Army Activity Message (ALARACT) this week requiring units to complete a composite risk assessment prior to any safety briefing.
The message comes in response to a recent incident involving a negligent discharge during a safety briefing, where First Sergeant Benjamin Bordeaux’s weapons handling instruction turned disastrous.
"We feel it's the right thing to do to make sure that our soldiers are always safe before and during safety briefs," said Lieutenant Colonel Skip Wilson.
The risk assessment will be similar to the Travel Risk Planning System (TRiPS) currently in use that soldiers use for leave, according to Brigadier General Thomas Mairs, Commanding General of USACR/Safety Center.
The new mandate is the end result of a tragic day at the pistol range.
PFC James Mander was at the range that day with the 29th Cavalry. He said the safety brief was started by a negligent discharge from PVT Grant Parks -- who accidentally fired a round into the clearing barrel.
“We all formed up, and 1SG comes walking out all pissed off like. He went on to say that he was going to teach us about weapon status," said Mander. "At the time all I could think of was how fucking hot it was. Top held the pistol out and said, 'My weapon is clear, what status is this?'
“With our fake motivatonal yell, we said 'Green 1SG.'
“He took a loaded mag and slammed it in and said, 'And now?'"
“At this point, shit got real," said SPC Lester Biggs. "1SG racked the slide and asked us what this was. We all wavered a bit when we said 'Red.'”
1SG Bordeaux was later quoted in a CID report as saying "That’s fucking right red. Red as in I'm about to be so red hot after the installation CSM gives me the fist fucking of my life after I let a reject like PVT Parks who has been in the front leaning rest for the past two hours ND on this goddamn range."
The fiery statement was made while he flagged the formation with his pistol in an effort to emphasize each and every word he was saying.
The First Sergeant didnt end there.
"I will teach each and every one of you fucks weapon safety if its the last thing I ..” The sentence was punctuated with the discharge of the pistol. The bullet produced a 9mm hole in the top of 1SG Bordeaux’s boot.
SPC Riggs said, “Top went down, and that’s when our high speed combat life savers went into action putting a tourniquet on his leg after seeing the blood come out of his boot. Last thing I saw of him was the ambulance take him to the hospital."
1SG Bordeaux is expected to make a full recovery, according to sources at Bayne Jones Army Community Hospital. He will likely go before a Medical Evaluation Board before he gets a chance to retire, assuming he doesn’t disappear into the limbo that is Range Control.