2002-MRI Machine Magnetically Grabbed Officer’s Gun and Fired It
Contrary to the misunderstandings of many, guns are made in such a way as to be very safe to handle properly. Accidental discharges other than a finger or object hitting the trigger are almost nonexistent. “Drop safe” is designed into all but the oldest or cheapest handguns. But nobody at the gun design shop ever contemplated running afoul of a machine that has so much raw magnetic force involved. I suspect that if the gun below was taken apart, numerous internal parts were broken, bent or pulled out of place by the magnetic forces.
The source for the story is a web site that openly and strongly advocates for defensive gun use and CCW. Many of you would not want to spend any time there. Worry not, I used Do Not Link for the site link, but the link to the original medical technology report is straight to the source. No injuries occurred in this billion to one accident. Officers, stay the hell out of MRI suites, between your gun, magazines, handcuffs and various bits on your Sam Browne belt your life is in danger the instant that machine powers up.
The officer notified the technologist that he was carrying the weapon before entering the MR dressing room. The technologist told the officer to take the gun with him. The technologist intended to meet the officer in the MR patient waiting area before the examination and secure the weapon in that room, where he felt it would be safe. However, the officer apparently misunderstood and took the gun into the MR suite. The technologist was entering the officer’s personal data into the computer and did not see him entering the MR suite.
Once the officer was inside the MR suite, the gun was pulled from his hand as he attempted to place the gun on top of a cabinet 3 ft (0.9 m) away from the magnet bore. The gun was immediately pulled into the bore, where it struck the left side and spontaneously discharged a round into the wall of the room at the rear of the magnet. Fortunately, no one was injured. Although the gun struck the magnet bore, only minimal cosmetic damage occurred to the magnet itself. The MR unit had full functional capability immediately after the gun discharged. The weapon’s thumb safety was reportedly engaged when the gun discharged.
An unsuccessful attempt to remove the gun from the magnet resulted in the gun being pulled to the right side of the magnet (Fig. 1). The decision was then made to power down the magnet to remove the gun.