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Workers On Alec Baldwin’s ‘Rust’ Felt ‘Unsafe’ About Gun Protocols After Previous Accidental Discharges On Set

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Alec Baldwin, Halyna Hutchins

Hours before the harrowing incident that resulted in the death of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins and the injury of Director Joel Souza, workers on set of "Rust" reportedly protested the working conditions of the set by performing a walk-out.

According to reports from the LA Times, workers complained about long hours, long commutes, waiting for their paychecks, and lax safety protocols.

The “Rust” film set had 3 accidental discharges before the one that killed Halyna Hutchins

The unnamed sources are familiar with the matter, and said at least one of the camera operators complained last weekend to a production manager about gun safety on the set.

The movie industry typically follows a very strict set of guidelines given to them by the Industry-Wide Labor-Management Safety Committee.

RELATED: Alec Baldwin Could Be Charged With A Crime For Death Of Halyna Hutchins

The very first bulletin addresses firearms and the use of blank ammunition and reads, "TREAT ALL FIREARMS AS THOUGH THEY ARE LOADED."

Unfortunately for Alec Baldwin — the actor who fired the gun that resulted in Hutchins’s death — the gun was loaded with a live round that was fired while he was practicing a scene.

Last Saturday on the 16th, Baldwin’s stunt double accidentally fired two rounds Saturday after being told that the gun was “cold” — meaning that the gun didn’t have any live rounds.

The same thing was allegedly said to Baldwin on the day of the accident.

“There should have been an investigation into what happened,” said one of the unnamed crew members. “There were no safety meetings. There was no assurance that it wouldn’t happen again. All they wanted to do was rush, rush, rush.”

The tragic shooting again proves the need for stricter gun protocols across the U.S.

The fact that this happened multiple times during the shooting of this film should bring about a commentary not only on gun safety on the set of any project but also the underwhelming gun safety and control in the U.S.

The desensitization of citizens in the U.S. to guns and the sheer amount of firearms that exist means that preventable gun deaths are more common than they should be.

According to reports from the National Safety Council, accidental gun deaths accounted for 1% of total gun-related deaths in the United States in 2018.

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The Small Arms Survey conducted in that same year showed that the United States owned more than 390 million guns, beating the number of people in the country and also beating the country with the next most per 100 residents by more than double.

Rust Movie Productions issued a statement about the incident, saying “The safety of our cast and crew is the top priority of Rust Productions and everyone associated with the company.”

The statement continues, addressing the reports of crew members’ concerns — claiming that they were unaware of any.

“Though we were not made aware of any official complaints concerning weapon or prop safety on set,” they said, “we will be conducting an internal review of our procedures while production is shut down.”

Baldwin had been preparing for a scene where he pulls a gun out of a holster and had succeeded once without incident, but the second time he did so, ammunition flew toward the trio around the monitor.

Crew members were worried something like this would happen as a result of the poor working conditions they were operating under.

They had been promised the production would pay for their hotel rooms in Santa Fe before they started filming, but once filming began they were told they had to make the commute from Albuquerque each day — a 50-mile drive.

After spending 12 to 13 hours on the set each day, they worried that exhaustion would kick in and cause an accident.

Before her unfortunate death, Hutchins had been advocating for better working conditions for her colleagues, tearful when they performed the walkout.

No charges have been filed yet, but the investigation being done by police continues and the set remains closed indefinitely until it is completed.

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Isaac Serna-Diez is a writer who focuses on entertainment and news, social justice, and politics. Follow him on Twitter here.