In our Basic Pistol Course, we focus on marksmanship, safety and basic weapons manipulation such as draw stroke, loading/unloading and malfunction drills. Shooting drills focus on basic principles and proper mindset. As care and handling are a top priority in this training, even the basics are not “basic”. The first four rules of firearms safety can be lumped into the following categories. From there we branch off into more dynamic instructions to help anyone, from beginners to trained professionals, remember the importance of proper firearm safety.
Treat Every Gun As If It Were Loaded
Understanding the power behind any weapon is an important element. Treating any firearm as if it is armed and ready to unload that power will ensure the right respect, handle and care of the weapon while in your possession. NEVER assume the chamber is empty, NEVER assume the safety is one (or that there is one), NEVER assume anything when picking up a firearm. Check and double check to know the firearm is cleared and secure before proceeding in any manner.
Keep Your Finger Off The Trigger Until You Are Ready To Shoot
Be aware of your hand placement at all times. Never become too “relaxed” when handling a firearm. You must be alert and aware that you are holding a weapon that can fire at the slightest touch of the trigger. Until you have checked your firearm, have a clear shot and are prepared to fire, keep your finger off the trigger.
Never Point Your Firearm At Anything You Don’t Intend To Shoot
Understand that any shot can be fatal. If you are at target practice, ensure a clear and safe firing zone before each and every shot. If you are in a situation requiring you to pull your firearm for protection reasons, don’t aim and point your weapon towards the aggressor unless you are prepared to potentially destroy your target. “Although you’ve determined that the gun is safe, always be conscious about the direction the muzzle is pointed in. When it’s not aimed at a target, the gun should always be pointed in a direction so it will not harm anything if a round went through the barrel at any moment.”
Be Clear Of Your Target And What’s Beyond It
Before shooting, consider what is around and behind the target that could potentially be at risk if the bullet were to bounce or continue traveling. Understand the power of the ammunition as it is fired and the destruction that can occur as a result of a strayed path.
Find more on the topic in the following article: Firearm Safety: 4 Rules That Every Shooter Should Follow