Gun ownership is both a privilege and a responsibility. In addition, if you have decided to carry a weapon, whether it is concealed or not, you need to learn a few best practices that will keep you and those around you safe.
Take a Gun Safety Course
Before you even purchase a weapon or look for ammunition in bulk, you should complete at least one gun safety course. Several companies have firearm safety courses, but your local gun range may also offer courses. You can learn about home safety and personal protection, but you can also learn about specific weapons, such as shotguns, rifles and pistols. Choose courses that are relevant to the weapon you want to carry and the purpose for carrying it. For example, you wouldn’t take a hunters’ safety course and rifle training if you planned to carry a concealed weapon.
Handle the Weapon Properly
You need to be very careful how you handle your weapons. First, always handle them as if they are loaded. Also, always check whether your firearm is loaded or not, even if you regularly empty it before storing it. Avoid touching the trigger until you are ready to fire, even if you know the safety is on.
Never point a weapon at a person. If you are not firing, you should hold it down, but do not point it at your feet. If you are preparing to fire, point it directly at the target. Do not hold your gun straight up or in the air because it could accidentally fire and harm someone. Finally, store your weapon with the barrel facing either straight up or down, rather than to the side.
Assess Your Environment
You need to be aware of everything in your vicinity. This means, where people are standing and where your target is. However, you should also know what is behind and around your target. Be sure you won’t hit anything if your bullet goes through the target.
It is your responsibility to handle your weapon securely. Therefore, learn best practices to ensure your safety and that of those around you.