Georgia Man Loses Leg by Shooting Lawn Mower Full of Tannerite Explosives

A Georgia man who was videotaped last week shooting at a lawn mower packed with explosives lost his leg in the resulting explosion, authorities say.

Tannerite® was packed in an old rider lawn mower that was used for “target practice.” Presley was shooting at the Tannerite-packed target when David Presley, of Walton County, Georgia, was only 43 feet away. Tannerite® is a mix of two compounds that are detonated by a high velocity impact. A low velocity impact, such as a drop on the floor, is not expected to cause detonation — although it’s still probably not recommended.

Walton County Sheriff Joe Chapman advised a serious warning about Tannerite®. Guidelines state a person should be positioned at least 100 yards away from the detonation site for every pound of Tannerite used. Tannerite is legal in Georgia, and is marketed as a long range, high visibility “target hit” indicator.

In the United States, ATF regulations allow the two components of Tannerite® to be legally purchased, since neither one is an explosive by itself. Once it is mixed it cannot be transported without following strict regulations, including an insurance policy, special packaging, and warning signage.

(U//DSEN) Tannerite® is available at most outdoor/sporting goods-type stores where a one pound container sells for $7.99 U.S. currency (USC) and a four quantity sells for $39.99 USC. Tannerite® is not flammable.

The ammonium nitrate portion of the Tannerite® is the useful component for the “one pot” manufacture of methamphetamine. Both the Special Testing and Research Laboratory and the Northeast Regional Laboratory of the DEA confirmed that Tannerite® can be used in place of cold packs to manufacture methamphetamine.

Pseudoephedrine is also a sought-after chemical precursor in the illicit manufacture of methamphetamine and methcathinone, but it is more highly regulated than Tannerite. As a result of the increasing regulatory restrictions on the sale and distribution of pseudoephedrine, many pharmaceutical firms have reformulated, or are in the process of reformulating medications to use alternative, but less effective, decongestants, such as phenylephrine.

Many retailers in the US have created corporate policies restricting the sale of pseudoephedrine-containing products. The corporate policies of Walgreens, for example, restrict sales by limiting purchase quantities and requiring a minimum age with proper identification. These requirements are similar to and sometimes more stringent than existing law.

In March 2006, the United States Congress enacted Senate Bill 103: the Combat Methamphetamine Epidemic Act of 2005, which requires any product containing ephedrine or pseudoephedrine, to be strictly regulated to help prevent the production of methamphetamine, an illegal street drug. Pseudoephedrine is a common ingredient in many cold and allergy relief products. People who purchase products with pseudoephedrine from the Walgreens pharmacy have to sign for it.

Products containing ephedrine or pseudoephedrine require a prescription in Mississippi, Missouri and Oregon.

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