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Old July 3, 2011, 10:40 PM   #1
DeepEastKilla
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Blackhawk Serpa Holster = Negligent Discharge?

Well I figured that I would post this so you guys could see and possibly learn from it. One of my youtube buddies had an accident this weekend while he was making a video. He explains what happened in the beginning of the video.



http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zYvAx...&feature=feedu


Almost makes you think twice about the serpa holsters and safety in general.

<<<Warning: Just an FYI, the person in the video (quite understandably) shouts an obscenity upon realizing he has just shot himself.

PLEASE watch the video all the way through before commenting on this thread. While the incident is shown in the first few seconds, the person involved in the incident explains the situation thoroughly as the video progresses and the entire video is only 4 minutes long.

You're wasting your time and everyone else's if you try to comment before watching the entire video.

Thanks, JohnKSa>>>

Last edited by JohnKSa; July 4, 2011 at 07:00 PM. Reason: Added warning and request.
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Old July 3, 2011, 11:09 PM   #2
Jim March
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Sorry, but´╗┐ I *do* blame the Serpa holster. The whole idea of that type of release to draw is crazy. This isnt' the first time this has happened and it won't be the last. That holster has been banned from many nationally recognized training facilities for multiple reasons, this being only one. Another is that the gun in holster's "main body" can be ripped from the belt mount with one quick twist and rip.
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Old July 3, 2011, 11:19 PM   #3
secret_agent_man
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Holster is a POS with a definite design defect when used with a 1911. Product liability aspects are present. The guy who designed that holster was not a 1911 shooter.

So much for 45 ACP stopping power. If that was a 125 grain 357 MAG round at 1450 fps, the guy would have been off his feet.
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Old July 3, 2011, 11:20 PM   #4
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heres the main issue that comes to the front.

1. the person was doing "instructional" video junk for you tube?
2. the person was doing "gunplay" with a loaded weapon while trying to get it on film, ie "gunning while distracted"
3. using a holster that is KNOWN to have issues when used in the same manner that was being used to dot he video?

i wonder if you can still get photos or the u tube video of the "fbi agent" who shot himself with a glock while screaming "im the only one professional enough to use this"
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Old July 3, 2011, 11:26 PM   #5
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Sooo, wait, WHAT is the issue with this holster? I ask because I have one for my M&P 45. If this is common I will NOT be using it again... EVER.
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Old July 3, 2011, 11:30 PM   #6
DeepEastKilla
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its not exactly the holsters fault but it is something to consider. the reason the incident happened is because he was shooting with another holster previously which caused him to disengage the safety and he hit the trigger before he even meant to have his finger in the guard.
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Old July 3, 2011, 11:52 PM   #7
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To me, it is a combination of bad holster design and a bad drawing technique. (and I posted as much in response to his vid)

Putting a release in a holster right near where the thumb safety of the gun is?! Wow. I guess I am not tactical enough to own such a holster.

Thanks for posting this, and thanks to your friend for having the guts to post it and take responsibility for his actions. He may have just saved other folks from the same (or worse) fate.

If that were a hollow point, it probably would've take his knee out, his foot off, or just destroyed all the muscle in his thigh on the way out.

One thing that was scary to me was the shockwave of the bullet going through his leg, which could be seen in the slow-motion shot. From ballistic gelatin videos, we know that shock waves is a lot worse with HPs.

Here's to a speedy recovery to your friend.
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Old July 3, 2011, 11:53 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wrothgar
Sooo, wait, WHAT is the issue with this holster? I ask because I have one for my M&P 45. If this is common I will NOT be using it again... EVER.
The issue is that it has an internal thumb release to release the gun, which is located right next to the thumb safety of a 1911. And probably an M&P too, since it is in approximately the same spot.

When he tried to do a quick-draw, he seems not to have hit the release just right, went to jerk the gun out, disengaged the thumb safety, and curled his trigger finger onto the trigger loop.

I'd sure hate to be the guy in charge of Serpa right now. Or his chief lawyer. It's going to hurt them some.
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Old July 3, 2011, 11:56 PM   #9
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Side note: It is hard to BELIEVE all the !#$%%&*( out there on YouTube. Only thinking of themselves, and imagining it can only happen to someone else. We all have our moments of weakness.

Karma will get them, I hope.

Know what would be awesome? If he did ad sharing and got so many views it paid for his hospital bill.

I broke my leg in a motorcycle accident a couple years ago, and the ambulance ride was $100 per minute.

The surgery and hospital stay was $29k. His was probably less, but you get the idea. That mistake has cost him BIG-TIME.
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Old July 4, 2011, 12:04 AM   #10
Wrothgar
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Quote:
And probably an M&P too, since it is in approximately the same spot.
Mine doesn't have a thumb safety. Still an issue?
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Old July 4, 2011, 12:09 AM   #11
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Wait a minute, I have a "sportster". Same thing? It looks exactly like this.
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Old July 4, 2011, 12:16 AM   #12
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I just watched it again. This particular holster has a thumb release, near the safety of the gun. (not an issue for you, on your model)

But there's also a release just outside the trigger area, it seems. His gun didn't draw smoothly because he didn't trip both releases (if I understood correctly) and when he pressed the index finger release, he forgot to keep his finger straight. His finger then went into the trigger loop and BAM.

I don't think it'll be an issue for you, as M&Ps have longer trigger pulls. I don't think a holster with more than one thing needed at a time to release it is a good idea.
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Old July 4, 2011, 12:17 AM   #13
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I have that Sportster too. As long as you don't press the release button in with the tip of your finger, it should be OK. The release button is designed so you can (and should) press it with your finger straight out.
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Old July 4, 2011, 12:20 AM   #14
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Smaug, look at the video again.

The holster he was using EARLIER used a thumb-release near the safety. Which, admittedly, is dumb - ESP. with a 1911 pattern.

But that's not the holster he was wearing when he shot himself.

What happened when he shot himself was, he hit the "holster's thumb release switch" that wasn't there because he'd switched holsters, and instead switched off the 1911's safety very early in the draw sequence. This combined with the Serpa's main flaw to produce an ND.

The Serpa's main flaw is the location of the release switch. You're pushing inward on this button with your finger. As you continue the draw, if you keep pressing right at the same point, whoops, you hit the trigger.

And that's only the first of three major flaws in the Serpa or anything else with a release button near the damn trigger!

2) If a piece of grit gets under the release button, your gun is frozen in the holster.

3) If you walk up behind somebody dumb enough to wear a Serpa in public, you can rip the entire gun and holster "core" right off the belt mount by rotating the grip down and then out. In less than a second. If the poor fool is REALLY lucky, there will be a piece of grit under the release mechanism and you'll have a club in your hands instead of a gun.

DO NOT buy a Serpa. If you have one, toss it in a campfire or wood chipper or do your own Blend-Tech[tm] parody commercial (and I assure you, yeah, it'll blend - probably with a fairly cheap blender).
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Old July 4, 2011, 12:32 AM   #15
Wrothgar
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So, if Serpa's are bad, what other hard plastic molded holsters are there? I don't use mine much, I'll keep it for now, but I would like to have something a bit safer.
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Old July 4, 2011, 12:55 AM   #16
Jim March
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Most are crap. If they have a release switch anywhere near the trigger, they're extra-double-yuck crap.
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Old July 4, 2011, 01:11 AM   #17
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I think you guys are missing the point entirely. The holster had NOTHING to do with the ND. The fact that he curled his finger on the trigger and squeezed it as he drew was the reason the gun went off. He admitted this himself in the video. You could keep your gun holstered in a wet napkin and the gun still wouldn't go off unless you pulled the trigger.

I wear my G23 in a serpa and when I practice drawing it, I hit the release and keep my trigger finger straight when the gun comes out. The finger rests outside the trigger guard automatically and then goes on trigger only when I am ready to fire.

No offense to your friend but this was a negligent discharge all the way, he needs to remind himself of the 4 basic firearms rules while he is recovering. I am very glad he did not hurt himself more than he did. Hope he has a speedy recovery.

Be safe out there guys and gals!
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Old July 4, 2011, 01:11 AM   #18
Rob228
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Quote:
So, if Serpa's are bad, what other hard plastic molded holsters are there? I don't use mine much, I'll keep it for now, but I would like to have something a bit safer.
I've used the Safariland thigh holster pretty extensively for work and it works really well. The pistols were MEUSOC 1911's and there was never an issue of the thumb release causing someone to disengage the safety. Obviously not a concealment rig though, if that is what you are looking for.

If you are going for a thigh holster make sure it is at the right height, most people wear them ENTIRELY too low, you should be able to curl your fingers around the bottom of the holster when you are standing straight up.
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Old July 4, 2011, 01:30 AM   #19
Jim March
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Quote:
The fact that he curled his finger on the trigger and squeezed it as he drew was the reason the gun went off.
Ah, but WHY did he curl his finger? Because he was still putting pressure on in the same area and fashion he was tripping the release switch.

Look, if you tell your finger to curl, and put on some pressure, telling it to STOP isn't the quickest thing in the world. Right? So that's a really terrible place to have to apply some pressure.
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Old July 4, 2011, 01:35 AM   #20
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Yeah I agree it may not be the best place for the release but that is where it is. I know where it is on mine and I conciously think of that EVERYTIME I practice pulling my gun. Should it matter where the release is? Isn't one of the basic rules of firearms to not have your finger on the trigger until ready to fire?

The gentleman in the video was not an older man with arthritis or some other crippling hand disorder. There is no reason he could not release the gun and then straighten his finger. Since I saw this, I have practiced drawing and find it difficult to not straighten my finger.

Movement of the fingers occurs very fast and maybe if people played more video games or played a musical instrument they would have better finger control. (I do both...)
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Old July 4, 2011, 01:51 AM   #21
ClydeFrog
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Error-net!...

To correct a recent post here, it was a sworn "undercover" DEA agent not a FBI special agent who shot himself with a Glock .40S&W pistol. The wounded federal agent was from Lake Mary Florida and was speaking to a group of children in the Orlando area. To my knowledge the DEA special agent also played for 2 different NFL football teams too.
As for the video clip, the wounded man clearly states he does NOT blame the Blackhawk holster.
I think it's more of a training & safety issue than a equipment issue. I, too have seen & read about problems with SERPA rigs but I've also seen many cops & armed professionals wearing them. The large(1200+ sworn LE members) sheriff's office in my metro area has used SERPA tactical holsters with the Glock 21 .45acp for many years.
I was looking into a left hand Blackhawk SERPA for my new S&W military and police 9x19mm. I may buy a SFS/ALS type Safariland holster for duty use.
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ps; As I said before, training is important. Red guns or Ring blue guns can be used to increase drawing/safe shooting methods.
Important too is; KEEP YOUR FINGER OFF THE TRIGGER, until you are ready to fire.
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Old July 4, 2011, 03:00 AM   #22
Jim March
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Quote:
As for the video clip, the wounded man clearly states he does NOT blame the Blackhawk holster.
Then he isn't aware of the other accidents of this type that have occured with this holster.
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Old July 4, 2011, 03:07 AM   #23
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Nothing wrong with he Serpa. This guy is just a idiot. He doesn't know how to draw. He flips off the safety with the gun still in the holster. He engages the trigger the minute it clears the holster. I am curious as to what training he is referring to. He certainly didn't appear to have any.
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Old July 4, 2011, 03:45 AM   #24
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the guy in the vid placed the blame not on the holster, but squarely on himself.

that would be correct.
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Old July 4, 2011, 04:09 AM   #25
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I have to disagree with most everyone. The only holster I used as a Leo is a level 3 serpa with a tac light. Reason being bad guys can't take your gun unlike with a standard hood one. And as far as them breaking any holster will do that with a paddle design. I know for a fact the duty set up wont, since its mounted like any other duty holster.

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