In light of the tragic shootings that have occurred over the last few years, gun safety has continued to be a priority issue for politicians, teachers, and physicians alike. About one-third of American homes contain firearms, with approximately two million children have access to loaded guns that aren’t locked or stored away. Children are put in extremely dangerous situations when unlocked guns are left throughout a home, as children (even young toddlers) are strong enough to pull the trigger on a weapon. Here are some things to keep in mind if you own guns.
Prioritize Kids Safety
The most effective way to keep a child safe from an accidental shooting is to allow them to live in a home without a firearm. Accidental shooting and suicide rates drop when it is more difficult for children or adolescents to have access to a gun. However, this isn’t a reality for many homes across the country, therefore it is a parent’s or adult’s responsibility to protect a child from an accidental discharge.
Practice Safe Storage
Simply keeping your sidearms in their Blackhawk holsters on a shelf in the closet is not enough protection. A locked gun safe is the best way to keep a weapon out of reach of a child. It is also important to store guns without any ammunition in them, but store all of the ammunition in a separate area from the guns. Don’t leave the keys to your gun safe or closet laying around, and don’t enter a numeric lock code in the presence of children or teenagers. Keep the safety engaged on all of your firearms when stored, being transported, or when waiting your turn when target practicing.
If you aren’t trained in how to use a gun, you may be jeopardizing your child’s safety out of ignorance. Knowing how to handle a weapon, how to safely load or unload the weapon, and how to safely clean the gun will increase the safety of everyone around when you are carrying your gun or putting it away. You should consider taking a beginner’s gun safety course, as well as a shooting course to be more familiar with your firearm. Don’t take your children with you to the range, as they may become curious on their own with the weapon.
Gun safety is extremely important, especially when there are kids in the home. You can help reduce the statistics of gun violence or accidental shootings by storing your guns unloaded and locked up.