Does anyone know of any scientific studies on fires started by shooting small arms ammunition?
I am mainly interested in commonly available civilian types of ammunition, not exotic military tracer or incendiary rounds.
Several wildfires in Utah have been blamed by federall bureaucrats on “shooters” alleging that bullets containing steel cores or jackets are creating sparks when hitting rocky soil and setting brush on fire. That fits neatly with their agenda to prohibit shooting in hundreds of square miles of BLM or Forest Service land, but ignores other likely causes- smokers, fireworks, campfires, sparks/hot muflers on motorcycles or ATVs, lightning, etc.
Although there may be a theoretical possiblity of sparks from ferrous bullet components striking rocks, there is also the possibility of muzzle flash (assuming the shooter is down in the weeds) or perhaps burning powder grains or patches from a muzzle loaders, but all those seem extremely unlikely, although not entirely theoretically impossible.
Any scientific evidence would be greatly appreciated.
Great “Mythbusters” topic…