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Thread: Target Shooting on Your Own Property

  1. #1
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    Hey Gang,

    I've been curious as to the laws regarding target shooting on your own property. In my personal case, I live in unincorporated Snohomish County outside of Stanwood on 5 acres. One area of my land would be perfect for target practice as it has a natural 20-25' burm of ground that would make a great backstop.

    Does anyone have any experience with this? Where would I go to find out definitively. Is it a law issue, zoning issue or both?

    Any thoughts?

    Thanks,
    Mark

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    Check your local laws. Generally places in unincorporated parts of counties are open for shooting.



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    Hi.

    Laws or no laws, you should go and have a sit down with your neighbors first and ask if they have any objections. Make plans, show how safe it will be, add any suggestion they might make.

    There the ones who will be calling the cops on you, and the ones to sue.

    Get them on the same page, and things will be far easier for everyone.

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    EXCELLENT advice!!!
    CZ 75B 9mm, Ruger P94 .40 S&W, Bersa Thunder .380, AR-15 Homebuild

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    who knows, they might want to join in on the fun sometimes...
    When the **** hits the fan, ask yourself: What Would Bugly Do?

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    Regular Member just_a_car's Avatar
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    Yano, I was going to send you the link to the No Shooting Zones pdf for Snohomish County, but for some reason it's no longer on their FTP site.

    I have the one marked "Revised: June 29, 2007" and would bet that not much has changed since, as it has the Sultan Basin Rd. area marked along the road, which is one of the more recent things.

    If you PM me an email, I can send you the file. I will also try to find out why the file is no longer available online.
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    They have the no shooting zones written out in the county code. You just have to find them on a map yourself now I guess. Section 10.12.010.

    http://www.co.snohomish.wa.us/Docume...odeTitle10.pdf
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    Jeffytune wrote:
    Hi.

    Laws or no laws, you should go and have a sit down with your neighbors first and ask if they have any objections. Make plans, show how safe it will be, add any suggestion they might make.

    There the ones who will be calling the cops on you, and the ones to sue.

    Get them on the same page, and things will be far easier for everyone.
    You are right that you should chat with them but I wouldn't ask their permission. Explaining the laws and asking if there are any times during the day that would be difficult for them (ie nap times for kids) and agree not to shoot during those times would be my tack.

    They would have no grounds to sue you so that wouldn't be an issue. You can't sue someone for engaging in an activity allowed by law that causes you no harm.

    They can call the cops but if the cops are doing their job they will explain to the neighbors that it is perfectly legal, especially if you have made the effort to ensure a safe range and talked to them about their concerns and time schedules. A friend of mine up in Paradise (towards Mt Baker) was shooting on his property (Saturday and Sunday afternoons only) and every time he did the neighbor would call the sheriff. They explained the law to the neighbor each time. After the third call the sheriff told him that if he called again then they would arrest him for filing false police reports. The next week the neighbor made a shooting motion at my friend as he drove by. My friend called the sheriff about the implied threat and out they came again to warn the neighbor to knock it off. No problems after that.

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    True, if the law is currently on your side, you do not need to get there permission, but they can, and if they have deep pockets will file a law suite over and over again until your broke and have to sell your house.

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    Jeffytune wrote:
    Hi.

    Laws or no laws, you should go and have a sit down with your neighbors first and ask if they have any objections. Make plans, show how safe it will be, add any suggestion they might make.

    There (They're) (as in "They are", not "over there")the ones who will be calling the cops on you, and the ones to sue.

    Get them on the same page, and things will be far easier for everyone.
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    Mark:

    Some things to think about (from someone who also lives in an unincorporated area/soon to be annexed area of SnoCounty):

    1) Does the county require a permit to build the facility?
    2) What environmental regs will the county assess against you?
    3) Are you in an area free to build an outdoor range?

    We have this belief that we can build what we want. However, as the onerous codes increase, especially in SnoCounty, you may find it no longer viable to construct a range. Do careful research, ensure you are going about it right or you could find yourself facing fees and fines from the county, state (Ecology), federals (environmental).

    As an example, I wanted to do stream side restoration for a portion of a salmon bearing stream in my backyard. Simple, right? Hardly. First was the permit after submitting plans in detail. Then a review by the various departments in the county. Then a review by Fish & Game as well as Ecology by the state. Then by the EPA for the feds. Took me over six months to get a permit to simply add native plants and logs to build fish pools in a 30 foot section of the creek.

    Good luck but go carefully and investigate everything you will need to do.

  12. #12
    Regular Member amlevin's Avatar
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    If I recall correctly Snohomish County has restricted Shooting, other than hunting birds with a shotgun, to areas east of highway 9. From there it goes further by prohibiting shooting in areas where there are houses.

    Another factor to consider is the anti-noise law that limits noise in the environment.

    For example :

    Chapter 70.107 RCW
    Noise control
    Also, local government has often enacted noise ordinances that restrict operations that excede certain dba levels during different parts of the day (I found this to be useful in Marysville as the "effing" garbage trucks were clattering through my neighborhood at 6 AM. An e-mail to the director of public works with a reference to THEIR OWN ordinance put a stop to that).



    In short, you may not be allowed to shoot on your property, no matter how safe, just because of noise restrictions.
    "If I shoot all the ammo I am carrying I either won't need anymore or more won't help"

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    Jeffytune wrote:
    True, if the law is currently on your side, you do not need to get there permission, but they can, and if they have deep pockets will file a law suite over and over again until your broke and have to sell your house.
    This is a ridiculous statement. Why would you be going broke? It doesn't cost you anything to go to court with a list of the city codes and state law stating you are not violation anything.

    And frankly if someone filed a lawsuit more than once against the same person, for the same issues, any judge with a half a brain would throw it out immediatly, or award YOU money for the harrassment your neighbor is putting you through.

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    David.Car wrote:
    Jeffytune wrote:
    True, if the law is currently on your side, you do not need to get there permission, but they can, and if they have deep pockets will file a law suite over and over again until your broke and have to sell your house.
    This is a ridiculous statement. Why would you be going broke? It doesn't cost you anything to go to court with a list of the city codes and state law stating you are not violation anything.

    And frankly if someone filed a lawsuit more than once against the same person, for the same issues, any judge with a half a brain would throw it out immediatly, or award YOU money for the harrassment your neighbor is putting you through.
    It does cost you $29 to answer the complaint. Court fees can be awarded back however but you are still out your time to respond and show up to court.

    I agree with you though but sometimes finding a judge with a quarter of a brain is hard let alone half a brain.
    "A fear of weapons is a sign of retarded sexual and emotional maturity."

    "though I walk through the valley in the shadow of death, I fear no evil, for I know that you are by my side" Glock 23:40

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    You may also be creating a "hazardous waste site" by dumping all that heavy metal (lead) into the ground. This could lead to ground water issues as well as resale and potential future liability for environmental clean up under multiple Federal laws.

    Just something to think about.

    -adamsesq

  16. #16
    Founder's Club Member Jim675's Avatar
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    Use a suppressor*, copper bullets, and naturally fallen trees as a backstop.

    *after thoroughly researching WA law and retaining a lawyer.

    Good luck!


  17. #17
    Regular Member amlevin's Avatar
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    Jim675 wrote:
    Use a suppressor*, copper bullets, and naturally fallen trees as a backstop.

    *after thoroughly researching WA law and retaining a lawyer.

    Good luck!
    After all that it would just be cheaper to buy a membership in an established range.
    "If I shoot all the ammo I am carrying I either won't need anymore or more won't help"

    "If you refuse to stand up for others now, who will stand up for you when your time comes?"

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    Here is a very detailed map of King County that shows all shooting and no shooting areas. I was surprised to find that I live in an area that allows shooting (a thin strip between Kirkland and Bothell)

    http://www.metrokc.gov/ftp/gis/Web/V...NSArea_Map.pdf

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    Izzle wrote:
    Here is a very detailed map of King County that shows all shooting and no shooting areas. I was surprised to find that I live in an area that allows shooting (a thin strip between Kirkland and Bothell)

    http://www.metrokc.gov/ftp/gis/Web/V...NSArea_Map.pdf
    So according to this map all places which are in white color are "Yes Shooting areas"?

    Please pardon my ignorance, just trying to figure out free outdoor shooting spots. I live in Auburn area.

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  21. #21
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    Anyone have a shooting map for Pierce county/Gig Harbor Peninisula area. Thanks!

  22. #22
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    Izzle wrote:
    Here is a very detailed map of King County that shows all shooting and no shooting areas. I was surprised to find that I live in an area that allows shooting (a thin strip between Kirkland and Bothell)

    http://www.metrokc.gov/ftp/gis/Web/V...NSArea_Map.pdf
    Just wait til that area gets annexed by Kirkland. It becomes a no-shooting zone at that point.

    OTOH, getting a CPL might be more convenient since you'll be in city limits and can apply at the Kirkland PD instead of... where, actually? Do you have to go to Seattle now?

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