Did you know that 30% of Americans own a firearm? It’s true. Many people believe that gun ownership and Americans go hand-in-hand.
If you’re considering buying a gun of your own, you need to be safe and responsible. Guns are dangerous weapons and one wrong move can be deadly.
We’re here to give you a brief gun safety checklist to start you off on the right track. Read on to learn more.
Pre-Purchase: Pick the Best Firearm for You
Before you even buy your gun, it’s important that you’re choosing from the right types of guns for your skill level and needs. The wrong gun won’t be as safe or effective for you.
Ask for advice from experienced gun owners. If you’re a hunter, ask other hunters what they would use as a beginner.
Read online reviews. Sometimes reviews will tell you about certain problems or struggles with a gun, or, on the positive side, the benefits of that specific gun. For example, check out the Cobra Derringer reviews.
Always Start With Professional Training
You should never try to shoot a gun before you’ve learned how to. Go to a professional instructor at a gun range to teach you everything that you need to know about safe gun use.
Many people underestimate the importance of professional training. They might think that friends or parents are just as capable of teaching gun safety. In reality, this couldn’t be farther from the truth.
Take the time to go to a professional. It might save a life.
Practice at Gun Ranges
When you’re practicing with your gun, always do it at a gun range. It’s tempting to practice by shooting in the middle of fields or the woods, but this can be dangerous.
Gun ranges are safe spaces for gun owners to try out their firearms. You know that there’s never going to be someone in your line of fire and there’s plenty of room for you to make mistakes if you don’t yet have a perfect aim.
Practicing at gun ranges will make you a better shooter. Why wouldn’t you want that?
Always Assume the Gun Is Loaded
This might seem silly to anyone who’s never owned a gun before, but it’s one of the first pieces of advice that any responsible gun owner will give you. Always assume that the gun is loaded and ready to fire.
So why does this matter?
Guns are dangerous. If you discharge a loaded gun indoors, you could end up experiencing a tragedy. By always assuming that your gun can go off, you’ll save yourself a lot of trouble.
Even if the gun is obviously empty with all of the ammunition in front of you, it’s loaded. Don’t point it at anyone and keep your finger off of the trigger.
Never Point Your Gun Without Purpose
Speaking of pointing your gun, make sure that you’re always doing it with intention.
When not in use, you should point your gun away from anything (or anyone) that you could damage. Point it away from people and objects.
Never point your gun at something that you aren’t ready to shoot. Ideally, you’d never point your gun at anything that you aren’t ready to kill. Even if you intend to shoot to incapacitate, guns are still deadly, so death is still an option.
This means that you can’t “play around” with your gun. Accidental gun deaths result from this kind of carelessness. You might think that you’re being as safe as possible, but one accidental discharge can be devastating.
Learn Trigger Discipline
This is a good time to talk about trigger discipline.
In movies and television, it’s common to see people using terrible trigger discipline when they’re holding their guns. Their fingers are on the trigger! So why is this bad?
It takes nothing to spook someone into pulling a trigger. Even a small jolt or twitch can cause it. When your finger is on the trigger, you’re putting yourself and everyone else in danger.
Instead, keep your finger alongside the trigger. It should be outside of the guard so you’re not able to touch the trigger at all. Only put your finger on the trigger when you’re ready to fire the gun.
Keep Your Gun Locked Away
When you aren’t using your gun, make sure that it stays in a safe location that only you are able to access. Having a gun safe is imperative.
While you may think that it’s unimportant, especially if you live alone, you also don’t want any potential intruders to have easy access to your gun. Keep a key or code with you so you have easy access when you need it.
If you have children, this is even more important. Teach your child to never touch your gun. Accidental gunshot deaths by children have been on the rise.
Stay Aware of Your Surroundings
When you aim at a target, you aren’t only thinking about the target. You also have to think about the surrounding area.
What’s on either side of the target? It’s possible that you’ll miss your target altogether and hit something adjacent to it, so make sure that whatever you hit won’t cause a problem.
Is there something behind the target that you don’t want to hit? If the target moves, you can hit whatever was behind it as well.
Use This Gun Safety Checklist for Smart Gun Ownership
Guns are dangerous by design. To be a responsible gun owner, you need to keep this gun safety checklist in mind.
Remember, doing research online isn’t enough to practice good gun safety tactics. Always visit a professional before you start trying to shoot on your own. It might save a life.
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