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Gun Safety For Kids

It is our right to keep and bear arms, but it is also our responsibility to do so safely. It only takes one little mistake to cause a big accident. You Gun Safety for Kidscan’t neglect gun safety for kids, yours and others. Firearms safety is your responsibility and your duty, to our children and to ourselves.

Every time you purchase a new firearm, it comes with an owner’s manual.  The beginning pages are usually nothing but safety information, and there is a reason it is in the beginning of the manual.  Safe operation and handling is the number one way to prevent accidents.  It is not uncommon for gun owners to skip through this information and go straight to the weapon’s function, but it isn’t the brightest thing to do.

A few key guidelines that can prevent an accident would be:

  • Always treat your firearm as if it were loaded.
  • Know your target and what is behind it.
  • Keep your firearm out of the reach of children.
  • Perform proper maintenance procedures.

When it comes to home defense, especially when there are children around, you must develop a compromise.  You can unload your weapon and place a safety locking device on it, but intruders are not going to wait for you to unlock and load your firearm.  You would be doing just as well, if not better, by keeping a brick nearby.

Don’t try to hide a gun in the house, thinking that the child will never find it. They will. Children have the ability to find anything adults can hide. And, the better something is hidden, the harder the child will look for it, and the more importance it will have to the child once it is found.

Gun safety begins with you

If you own guns, use common sense. Keep your guns and ammunition inaccessible to your child as well as curious playmates. Don’t leave firearms lying around.  A toddler can stumble across them. And never assume that simply because a very young child lacks finger strength that they can’t pull the trigger. A child’s thumb has twice the strength of the other fingers. When a child’s thumb pulls the trigger, invariably the barrel of the gun is pointing at the child’s face. Get the picture?

Think about gun storage from your child’s point of view. Are the places you think are safe from a toddlers reach, really out of reach? Ever seen a child use a drawer to climb? They use the drawer as a stepping stool to climb the dresser! Ammunition, shotshells, and cartridges are not something that should be played with by a child. Keep your storage as inaccessible as your firearm.

You can use the option of carrying your weapon on you, either concealed or unconcealed.  This would probably allow you the quickest access if someone dangerous is inside of your home.  Be sure that you chose a good quality holster that covers the trigger to avoid curious fingers accidentally discharging your gun.

If you decide that carrying your weapon on your person is not the best option for you while inside of your home, you have to find a place to store it safely out of the reach of children, yet quickly accessible for you.  A quick draw gun safe is a good option.table gun safe

Whatever you do as far as gun storage you need to educate your children on both firearms operation and safety.  This may not work well with toddlers, but as your child grows older, it could prove to be invaluable.  Not only will you have a child who is skilled and can provide backup if needed, you have taken away the curiosity factor that causes so many accidents.

Teach your kids the basic firearm rules.  Avoid making the guns in the house anything mysterious.  You can guarantee that you will get their attention by telling them  “No,” without explanation or reasoning. Children are smart, and will see through flat prohibition.

Children and adolescents are naturally curious about firearms and, as a result, may be tempted to “play” with a firearm they find. Make sure young people in your home are aware of and understand these safety guidelines:

-Don’t go snooping, or allow other kids to go snooping, for guns in the house.
-If you find a gun in your house, or anywhere else, STOP! Do not touch it or allow anyone else to. Leave the area and be sure to immediately tell an adult.
-Even if a gun looks like a toy, don’t touch it. Some real guns look like toy guns, so don’t take a chance. Leave the area and immediately tell an adult.

You have to take into account other children coming into your house. They might be relatives or friends or your children.  Assume that they do not know how to handle a weapon safely.  Even if your children know gun safety, these other children might find the weapon by themselves, talk your children into an unsafe act, or do something before someone can stop them.  Weapons have to be secured even if you trust your entire household implicitly.

Make sure you talk to your children about not discussing the household weapon status with others. They should not show off firearms to friends woman aiming a gunand schoolmates. They should not tell friends and schoolmates that there are firearms in the house. They should not take a firearm from its place without a parent present.

Teach your kids that if a friend or acquaintance pulls out  gun in another house to be very careful.  Even if you child knows gun safety, the other child may do something dangerous or just stupid.  When in doubt, teach your children to leave the situation and come home.

The best thing to do is take your child to the range as early as possible. Start your children off right by showing them the ropes about guns. This includes showing them the proper procedures for unloading, verifying and handling a firearm.  A good thing to do is get them a BB gun or a airsoft gun and teach them proper technique with it. Make them treat that weapon as if it were a real home defense gun.

Talk to them about movies and TV shows and how some of the gun handling they see is not correct. Periodically, when you are watching together, quiz them on the gun handling practices of the TV or movie characters. This will help the principles of safe firearm handling  become second nature to your child.

As a parent and gun owner, you’re trying to instill lifelong safety habits, and nothing you say speaks as loudly as your own actions. Handle your own guns with extra emphasis on safety. Your child will learn all about them by watching you.

Do you have any tips for teaching children gun safety? Let us know in the comments.

 

 

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