Whether you are someone who has been using firearms your entire life or someone who is just getting started with them, it’s important that you know how to handle and operate them with care.
Your safety and the safety of those around you depend on it. Here are four gun safety rules that you should always remember when approaching, handling and firing a gun:
The Four Cardinal Rules of Gun Safety
#1: All guns are always loaded.
It’s easy to forget that there may still be a bullet in the gun you are handling and operating. This is especially true for those picking up a gun they did not load and does not belong to them. In order to ensure a gun does not accidentally misfire and injure you or those around you, always assume it is loaded and handle the gun accordingly.
#2: Never point the gun at anything you are not willing to destroy
Make sure you do not point a gun at anything you are not willing to shoot, even if you think it is not loaded. Erring on the side of caution is the easiest way to keep everyone around you safe. If you do not point your gun at those around you, there is a reduced chance that they would be injured by an accidental discharge.
#3: Keep your finger off the trigger until your sights are on target and you have made the decision to shoot.
The third rule on our list is an easy one. You reduce your chances of accidentally firing a gun if your finger is not on the trigger. Make sure that you only place your finger on the trigger once you have selected your target and decided you are ready to fire.
#4: Be sure of your target and what is beyond it.
The last basic rule of gun safety is just as important as the rest. According to The Physics Factbook, a bullet fired from an average sized 9mm handgun will travel 2,300 feet before falling. In order to prevent unnecessary harm when firing a weapon, you must be sure to know exactly what is beyond your target.