Easy access to firearms can lead to tragedy. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), more than 40,000 children and youth are injured or killed by firearms each year, which equals roughly 120 children a day.
In addition to your immediate family members, it’s important to practice gun safety for those who might be visiting your home.
Brad Parker says, “If a parent fails to secure their firearm out of the reach of children in their home and a child is injured or killed, the gun owner/homeowner is liable.”
More than a third of all unintentional shootings of children take place in the homes of their friends, neighbors or relatives. Parents can greatly reduce the chances of children being injured or killed by following these five important safety rules.
Five Important Gun Safety Rules
1) Firearms should always be stored in a locked cabinet, safe or lock box. Brad says, “It’s not enough to just tell your kids to stay away from guns in the home, you must remove all temptation by keeping your firearms under lock and key. You should also store ammo separately from firearms.”
2) Firearms should be unloaded when not actually in use. Whenever you pick up a gun, such as when removing it from or returning it to storage, remember to point it in a safe direction and ensure it is unloaded.
3) Use a gun locking device that renders the firearm inoperable when not in use. A gun lock should be used as an additional safety precaution and not as a substitute for secure storage.
4) Be sure you know exactly how your firearm operates. Review your owner’s manual on your firearm and know how to safely open and close the action of the firearm and know how to safely remove any ammunition from the firearm and its magazine.
5) Educate everyone in your family about firearm safety. “I would encourage anyone who chooses to keep a firearm in their home to attend a gun safety class with your family. It’s also so important that parents lead by example and always handle guns safely as a good example for their kids,” Brad says.
Safe Storage Options
Cable Lock - blocks the gun barrel to prevent the gun from firing ammunition.
Trigger Lock - a padlock-like lock that goes around the actual gun trigger and prevents an individual from pulling the trigger.
Lock Box – a small portable safe-like box with a key or combination lock for storing your firearm.
Gun Safe – typically a larger safe for one or more firearms and/or ammunition. Gun safes prevent access to unauthorized or unqualified persons, for burglary protection and protects the contents from damage during a flood, fire or natural disaster.
Another effective storage tip is to take apart the firearm.
At Parker Law Firm, our experienced personal injury lawyers believe people matter. We are committed to our clients, not case numbers, and we believe in the power of the civil justice system. With years spent both representing accident victims and participating in the state legislative process, our founder, Brad Parker, has developed a deep understanding of the law and gained unique experience that helps him get results for his clients.