In an effort to muffle the reports of police gunfire at a shooting range, the Redondo Beach City Council voted this week to spend $49,000 to build more sound walls at the 40-year-old facility.
The walls at the Beryl Street facility will be raised by up to 20 feet and noise-muffling material will be added to keep the sound of gunfire from echoing through the neighborhood, especially into classrooms at Powers Elementary School across the street from the range.
Police Capt. Jeff Cameron said the gun club is used three or four days a month by the 117 members of the force to qualify in firearms proficiency. He said the department is aware of concerns from neighbors and the school about noise and hopes that the higher walls will solve the problem.
“We’re going to work with the community and the school to do all we can to mitigate these concerns,” Cameron said. “As far as the students go, we’d liked to educate them that out of necessity police officers carry weapons and they have to be proficient in the use of those weapons. The sound they’ve been hearing is training by the officers, not a life-threatening situation.”
Cameron said the higher wall will also make the range safer. Now, the police use a metal backstop with a water trap to catch fired bullets. Ten years ago two bullets ricocheted out of the open-air range, but no one was hurt.