There is no doubt that shooting is an awesome activity that many love to do. When owning a firearm however, you have certain responsibilities to adhere to. Following particular rules will ensure the safety of you and those around you during your next shooting trip. Take a look at the following gun safety tips and you are guaranteed fun but safe adventures with your weapon of choice.
It’s so important as a huntsman that you know your gun like the back of your hand. Make sure you know how it operates and works. Get to know the mechanisms of your gun and even seek advice from a professional if you really want to get to know your gun on a deeper level. All weapons are different in their own way so I don’t recommend buying a brand-new gun and taking it shooting without taking the time to get to know it.
Even when you are just walking and carrying the weapon, always point it in a direction that it cannot harm anyone (i.e. upwards) ‘Never point a gun at anything you are not physically willing to shoot’ is a general rule to go by. It goes without saying that when actually aiming and getting ready to shoot animals, make sure nobody is in front of you and others are aware you are about to use the firearm. Never mess around with your gun, it’s not a toy and should never be treated as one.
Many hunters will have their finger on the trigger at all times when on a shooting trip and this should NOT be the case. You might want to be ready to catch any animals that might surprise you but you should not do so at a cost to your general safety. It’s so easy to slip and accidentally press the trigger when you don’t mean to do so. The only time your hand should be near that area of the gun is when you are actually ready to shoot prey that might be in your path.
Let’s say for example, you are hunting and spot what you think is a deer in the distance ready to shoot. Don’t just assume it’s a deer unless you are 100% sure because that could have dire consequences. You want to be at a safe enough distance so your target doesn’t see you but you also need to be able to completely identify your prey through the viewfinder of your gun, before you press that trigger.
In addition to this, make sure there is nothing in the path of, or behind the animal that could get hurt by your shot. If this is the case, it’s worth letting this animal go and finding a target that is easier to get to.
Things like water, stone and other hard surfaces could make any bullets fly off in an intended direction which is obviously not the safest. For that reason, there are surfaces you should definitely not shoot at when you are hunting.
It’s just a case of knowing your surroundings and knowing what could be harmful as a result of your actions. This is one reason why practice shooting is really important before you actually go hunting, it will give you a chance to get to know the environment around you.
All weapons should be loaded with bullets that are unique to that particular gun. Therefore, it’s always important to make sure the correct ammunition is used for your firearm. Just because a certain bullet might fit into your gun doesn’t mean you should just make do with that. Don’t be tempted to buy the wrong ammunition just because it is cheaper or easier to get hold of. The wrong bullet in the wrong gun could have a bad outcome so always do your research in this regard.
When shooting you might be carrying some guns with you that are not currently loaded with ammunition but it’s always best to assume that every gun is ready to fire. Follow all the gun safety tips that you would with a loaded gun because it’s better to be safe than sorry. Always following certain rules will mean this way of handling weapons will become like second nature to you and you will be the safest huntsman for miles around!
No matter how long you have been shooting, you should never become complacent and think that you don’t have to be aware of what is going on around you. The same rules apply to those who have never gone hunting before and to those who have been doing it for twenty years. Anything can happen when you are out shooting so be aware of yourself, those around you, your surroundings and of course, your weapon.
You might be tempted to go against some of these rules (such as never keeping your finger on the trigger) due to the safety mechanism on your gun. All firearms have safety locks that prevent them from being shot but you should not always rely on this.
Some people think they do not have to be careful because this feature will act as a lifesaver if they need it. These mechanisms are not always reliable, every gun varies and these supposed safety mechanisms have been known to not work correctly. Of course you should still use the safety and only unlock it when you are ready to use the gun but this doesn’t mean you shouldn’t also follow the other fun safety tips that have been mentioned.
It’s just pure fact that guns are the cause for so many deaths in America on a yearly basis. While you have the right to own a firearm, being safe with one is of the utmost importance. Execute your right to bear arms but be sure to practice gun safety when you are shooting and just handling the weapon in general. This will ensure that you have many happy hunting years ahead of you.