Having a personal firearm: is it a boon or a curse? Well, this completely depends on how responsible you are.
You’ll surprise to know that, around 47,000 people died in 2013 from unintentional firearms accident. These bad boys are no joke. Knowing what to do and avoid is a must if you want to avoid accidents. This may seem like a hassle but there’s good news! To make your life easier, there are four golden rules you should follow.
So, what are the four primary rules of firearm safety?
Rule Number One tells you to treat all guns as if they’re loaded. The Second rule tells us to never let the muzzle of the gun cover anything that we aren’t willing to destroy. Thirdly, never put your finger on the trigger until you have set your target. Last but not the least, be really aware of your target and what lies beyond it.
To get the whole picture and tattoo it in your mind, let’s go over them one by one.
Why do you need gun safety?
Now the fact that you’re reading this post tells us that you take gun safety seriously. Yet if you’re new to the department, let us help.
Gun safety is important because accidents happen. To err is human! A moment’s mistake can cause an injury of a lifetime. But with proper precautions, you can bring down the rate to almost zero! Talk about a bold statement.
Accidental gun deaths are decreasing all over the world due to gun safety programs. So pay attention! These rules may not only save your life but also keep your loved ones safe.
The four primary rules of firearm safety
Now that we’ve gotten the appetizers out of the way, let’s come to the real deal.
The best thing about these rules is that they’re overlapping. That means the 2nd rule is made just in case the first doesn’t work.
Take a while to read and understand these four golden rules. Hold on to them like your bible.
Rule 1 of 4: Treat all guns as if they’re loaded
Now practically speaking, this may seem like overkill. After all, you know that the gun sitting in your drawer isn’t loaded. But here’s the deal. It never hurts to be too careful. You’d be surprised at the number of accidents that happen because of ‘’unloaded” guns.
If anybody hands you a gun, never assume that it’s unloaded. ALWAYS recheck. Bottom line? Unloaded guns do not exist! At least not in this context.
Another piece of advice. If any relative or close friend asks you to safe-keep their gun, never accept unless you know how to operate it. Handling a gun without knowing it’s mechanism could prove deadly.
Rule 2 of 4: Remember the direction of your muzzle
Never point the muzzle towards anything that you aren’t willing to destroy! In case you’re new to this, the muzzle of your gun is the end of the barrel.
Forget about the movies which make pointing guns seem cool. When you keep your gun in place, ask yourself. “If it goes off in this direction, does anybody risk getting hurt?”. If the answer is yes, shift the position.
Practically speaking again, your gun must be pointed at something. Whether it be a wardrobe, a table, or a wall. Just ensure that it’s not something valuable to you.
In addition, if you’re practicing in a range, then it is fully your responsibility to ensure that the gun is NEVER pointed at someone.
Rule 3 of 4: Keep your fingers off the trigger!
Now because of the way the gun is shaped, your natural instinct is to curl your finger on the trigger. You may think, “This way I'll have a faster reflex when I shoot at a moving target”.
Rookie mistake buddy!
You may accidentally push the trigger without meaning to. Think of it like this. Your trigger finger is like your last line of defense. Once you press down, you make a decision that you can’t take back.
So unless you have your eyes on the target and you are absolutely ready to fire, don’t touch the trigger! If you’re someone who has this habit, rectify it as soon as you can.
Rule 4 of 4: Be aware of your target location and surroundings
Whatever your bullet comes in contact with, you’re responsible. Now you may have identified your target. But are you sure that the area BEHIND it is clear and safe?
Only shoot if you can say yes. Bullets can pass through thick objects and even travel for miles. You never know who it may hit.
Keep this rule in mind whether you’re hunting, at a range, or a sticky situation.
Other things to keep in mind
What we discussed were the four basic laws of gun safety. But to be a responsible gun owner, keep the following things in mind.
Know your weapon
Having a solid knowledge about your weapon is crucial. Each weapon has its won ways - how to hold, how to shoulder etc. And, you must know them by heart before use them in real hunting.
Give your guns for frequent servicing and maintenance
Failure to do so may cause your firearm to misfire. This may happen due to a buildup of debris and dust. So, avoid such mishaps by cleaning your gun regularly.
Never mix booze with guns
Or any kind of drugs for that matter. Anything that can impair your ability to think clearly should be avoided when handling firearms.
Keep your firearms out of reach for children
This one’s a no brainer. Every year, a majority of gun accidents happen because kids get hold of their parent’s revolvers. Your baby may think of it as a toy. So teach them the difference early on.
Moreover, keep your gun in a safe location so that no unauthorized person has access to it.
Only use the right ammo for your guns
A cartridge may load into your gun chamber. But if the bullet is too big to travel out of the barrel, the gun may explode in your hands.
This isn’t the place to get creative or mix and match. Instead, stick to the cartridge your gun is designed for. You may use high quality reloading kits for precise bullets.
That’s about it from us. We hope this post gave you a clear idea of what are the four primary rules of firearm safety. Hold on to them dearly, for it will surely come to use.
Are you a responsible gun owner? What are your favorite tips? Let us know all about it in the comments below. Good luck!