Experimental Effect of Shots Caused by Projectiles Fired from Air Guns with Kinetic Energy Below 17 J

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Abstract

Pursuant to the Polish Weapons and Ammunitions Law (Legal Gazette No 53/1999 item 549 with subsequent amendments), air guns with kinetic energy of the fired projectiles below 17 J are not regarded as weapons. The aim of the study was to assess the potential effect of shots caused by projectiles of various mass and structure fired from air guns with kinetic energy below 17 J on human soft tissues. As a model of soft tissue, we used 20% gelatin blocks. After shooting, we measured the depth of gelatin block penetration by pellets fired from various distances and compared these results with autopsy findings. The results demonstrated that examined pneumatic guns may cause serious injuries, including damage to the pleura, pericardium, liver, spleen, kidneys, femoral artery, and thoracic and abdominal aorta. Experiment shown that gelatin blocks do not reflect fully the properties of the human body.

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