Many years ago the NRA published general safety rules that when followed would create a much safer environment when handling firearms. They understood that people are bound to make mistakes. However, if these rules are adhered to, the percentage of gun related accidents would fall dramatically. The safety rules are as follows:
- Always keep your finger off the trigger until you are ready to shoot
- Always keep the muzzle pointed in a safe direction
- Always treat every gun as if it was loaded
- Always know your target and what is behind it
- Never point the firearm at anything you are not willing to destroy
There are several more safety rules however these general basic rules, if applied, should lead to a safer shooting atmosphere.
A while back in 2010, a shooting instructor was caught on video violating these safety rules which resulted in a negligent discharge from a revolver chambered in .44 magnum. Thankfully, nobody was injured during this incident. Yet, this incident serves as a reminder that the general safety rules apply to everyone, from a beginning shooter to an experienced firearm training instructor, and everyone else in between.
The fact is, it is human to error. But, an error at the gun range could have a devastating consequence. We have to be extremely cognizant of the condition of the gun, where it is pointed and how it is handled. I cringe every time I read of a gun related accident due to people mishandling their firearms. Although these types of stories are not fun to report, it is our job in the media to explain what happened and how it could have been avoided by continually driving home the message of proper and safe gun handling.
In the video below, I explain my thoughts about what happened and how it could have been avoided. I chose to not berate the instructor but to use his experience as an educational tool so the rest of us do not make the same mistakes. In this ever changing world of gun ownership and training, the one thing that should never change is safe firearm handling. It is my desire to never again read an article of a gun related accident.
Check it out: