Around 45% of people in the state of Texas live in a household that has at least one firearm. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, each year around 3,139 people in Texas are killed with a gun. If you own a gun or are considering owning one, it would be advisable to ensure you understand safety protocols and how to effectively use one. Even if you do not own a gun, you should still familiarize yourself with gun safety in the event you have to use one in the future. Additionally, paying attention to safety protocols can help you in the future if you are ever charged with a firearm offense.
Firearm Safety Tips
Enroll in a beginner’s course
If you have never handled a gun before, the first step of action you should take is to take yourself to a beginner’s course. You can ask a local shooting range for some course recommendations in your city. If you feel slightly uncomfortable about handling a gun even though you have used one in the past, it will not hurt you to retake a course or attend a course until you feel comfortable with gun handling again.
You will also learn additional skills in this course such as how to properly maintain your firearm and fine tune your shooting skills.
Make sure your gun is not loaded
If you plan on storing your gun at home, protect everyone in your house by ensuring your gun is not loaded. Before you head to any gun range, you will also want to make sure your gun is completely unloaded. You will be checked at the gun range anyways as the gun rangers there will need to check your ammunition.
When determining when it is appropriate to keep a gun loaded consider the reason for loading your gun. While you can have a loaded gun in your possession under certain circumstances, you should be familiar with gun safety and handling beforehand. Texas does not require that you have a valid handgun license to carry a loaded handgun in a motor vehicle or watercraft you own (this also applies if the vehicle is under your control). You can also carry a loaded rifle or shotgun in a motor vehicle as well.
Invest in or borrow proper safety gear
If you have never shot or handled a gun before, chances are you could hurt yourself or someone around you. Most gun ranges have safety gear that you can purchase or rent. In the event you do not want to use someone else’ gear, purchase your own. You will also need shooting eyeglasses and ear plugs to protect you.
Avoid misfiring your gun
Do not put your finger on the trigger of the gun until you are ready to shoot. If you place your finger on the trigger when you are not ready to shoot you could misfire and accidentally harm yourself or someone else.
Always point the muzzle in a safe direction
Do not point your gun at anything you do not intend to shoot. Control the direction the muzzle of the gun is facing at all times. Do not rest a muzzle on your hand or toes for any reason. You can get kicked out of a shooting range for doing something like this.
Know your safe zone of fire
Your safe zone of fire is the area where you can safely fire a gun without harming anyone. Become familiar with your surroundings before shooting, take note of the positioning of the people around you, and do not fire if you think you could hit someone.
Do not drink alcohol or take drugs before or while handling a firearm
These types of substances alter emotions making it more difficult to exercise control when using a firearm. You should steer clear of any drugs and alcohol before or while handling a gun to ensure your safety and the safety of those around you.
In the event you are charged with a firearm crime, do not hesitate to reach out to our firm online or via (210) 761-4943 for assistance. We will aggressively defend you to ensure your rights are protected.