Anywhere you are using a firearm whether it is hunting, at a shooting range, or on your own property, safety is the number one priority. Owning a gun is a huge responsibility and while there are many thoughts and guidelines out there for firearm safety, these four should never be ignored:
- Treat all guns as if they are loaded even if you are 100% sure they are not.
- Go out of your way to make sure any guns are not pointed at anything you don’t want to shoot.
- Do not put your finger on the trigger until you are aimed and have decided
- to shoot.
- Be positive of your target and be aware of what is behind it.
These firearm safety rules should ALWAYS be followed. Read on for more information on why these rules are important, as their importance cannot be understated.
1. Treat All Guns As If They Are Loaded
Many people roll their eyes at this one because it is commonly recited by everyone and is often regarded as a catch all for 3 that come after it.
Many gun owners after years of ownership relax since no accidents have happened on their watch, or this idea was not reinforced enough to them when they became a gun owner. Common sense would tell most people not to ever point a gun at themselves or their friends, but sadly common sense is not always common.
Let’s illustrate a scenario that may catch some off guard:
You have a few friends over to the house, and you are showing them a new pistol you have in your gun safe. You are in the habit of not keeping the guns in your safe loaded. That is an honor reserved only for the one you carry in your holster with the safety on. You go into your gun cabinet and your friend asks to see one of the others. You tell him that’s fine, but to be careful even though you never keep those loaded. What you forgot, was that you lent that gun to your son a month ago to go to the shooting range with his uncle, and he only emptied the magazine, leaving the chamber unchecked. In this scenario, if your friend pointed it anywhere inside your house and pulled the trigger there would be at the very least, damage to your home.
2. Don’t Point A Gun Anywhere You Don’t Intend To Shoot
Each year, nearly 500 people die from unintentional firearm discharge. Whether it is themselves or others, that number equates to more than one person a day each year excluding injuries that do not result in a fatality.
While you may be perfect at keeping your finger off the trigger, never assume that someone else knows this, or will even follow it when told.
It is simply not always enough to keep your finger off the trigger because accidents do happen, so going out of your way to keep firearms pointed away from people, animals and objects can prevent harm and damage if the trigger was accidently pulled.
3. Don’t Put Your Finger On The Trigger Until You Have Aimed and You Have Decided To Shoot
The common theme here is avoiding injury or damage. If you accidently point a gun at something you don’t intend, keeping your finger off the trigger until you are ready to shoot is a further safeguard against deadly accidents.
Trigger discipline is the most important habit when dealing with a gun. Visiting a range and practicing trigger discipline can help ensure that in a high stress scenario like defending your home you only shoot when necessary. Best case, in a home invasion situation, a gun serves as a deterrent with no need to even be fired. Keeping your finger off the trigger until you are sure you need to make that decision puts more distance between you and a nerve twitch with high stakes consequences.
4. Be Confident In Your Ability To Hit The Target And Avoid Collateral Damage
You should always know what is behind your target in every scenario.
If you are shooting recreationally on your own property, make sure there is a sufficient back stop and that a missed target does not result in fired rounds injuring or damaging anything behind the missed target at any distance.
If you are firing a gun with enough power and the right shot it can go through multiple targets. If you don’t intend to hit what is behind your target, you should not have your finger on the trigger as mentioned in rule three, much less fire.
In a home defense scenario this is just as, if not more important to be careful of.
Other Firearm Safety Tips
While these are the 4 main rules, there are other best practices to consider:
- Anytime you touch a firearm make sure it is empty
- Make sure the barrel is not blocked before you fire
- Wear personal protection equipment
- Remove the entire holster from your person before removing the gun from the holster
- Use proper ammunition only
- Don’t pick up a gun while under the influence
- Store all firearms safely
Come Check Out Our Firearm Inventory
Federal Firearms offers a large selection of guns for sale at our location. When you are here, as well as when you take your new purchase home, be sure to follow gun safety tips, and be educated on proper firearm handling. We offer safety courses and more to ensure our clients and members of the community are safe. Give us a call with any questions!