Firearms are powerful tools and must be treated with respect at all times. As a firearm owner and operator, your primary goal should always be to stay safe and never take shortcuts or become complacent. Here are the Four Rules of Firearm Safety:
Rule #1: Always treat a firearm as if it’s loaded
Every firearm is loaded, even if you just saw the sales associate clear it before handing it to you, clear it again for good measure. Check the chamber or receiver to see that there is no ammunition. Never assume someone else checked the firearm.
Chamber flags are used commonly at gun ranges to show an empty chamber. Locking the slide open on your pistol and removing the magazine also provides an easy look for anyone to see if it’s loaded or not.
Rule #2: Always keep the muzzle pointed in a safe direction
Never point a firearm toward another person or at yourself, even if you’re sure that it is unloaded. Keep your hands and other objects clear of the muzzle at all times. If you aren’t willing to destroy it, don’t point your gun at it.
Rule #3: Always know your target and what’s behind it
Before you pull the trigger, make certain of your target and its backdrop. Some ammunition has the capability to travel long distances, even after it penetrates the target. A pass-through has the potential to injure people, animals, or property behind the intended target.
Rule #4: Don’t put your finger on the trigger until you’re ready to shoot
It may seem natural to pick up and hold a firearm with your finger on the trigger, but this is not safe. Keep your finger on the trigger guard or along the slide until you have your sight set on the target and you are ready to fire. Bad habits are hard to break. Trigger finger placement can become instinctual if you do it each and every time.
If you follow these rules, personal injury and negligent discharge can be avoided. Be a leader and example for fellow shooters. Guide them through the steps of being a responsible firearm owner.
Additional Recommended Firearm Safety gear
Now that you know the proper way of handling firearms, let’s discuss personal accessories. You’ve only got one pair of eyes and ears, protect them by wearing eye and ear protection.
Safety glasses come in a variety of lens options. Clear for darker days, smoke for brighter days, and yellow for better detail. Some brands provide the different lens colors all in one bundle, for use in any condition.
Ear protection can be just as personalized. If you want to be able to communicate with fellow shooters, electronic muffs or plugs are recommended. You will hear everything clearly until a certain decibel is detected (a gunshot), then the sound will deaden. Nonelectronic options do not allow the sound to pass through. Thus, communication can be tricky. The higher the NR rating, the better the protection.
Ball Caps can be worn to help prevent spent brass casings from falling into your face or down your neck. These casings can be hot and distracting when you’re focusing on firearm safety.
Our team at Sporting Systems is experienced in helping gun owners get set up with all the proper gear to ensure they are handling a gun safely. Whether it’s double-checking that you’re using the correct ammunition or showing you how to properly clean your firearm, we’re here to help you exercise your Second Amendment rights. Contact us today for information on our various products!