- Store guns so they are inaccessible to children and other unauthorized users. Gun shops and sporting goods stores sell a wide variety of safes, cases and other security devices. While specific security measures may vary, a parent must, in every case, assess the exposure of the firearm and absolutely assure that it is inaccessible to a child.
- Always keep the gun unloaded until ready to use.
- If you do not know how to operate a gun, do not experiment with it. An untrained adult can be as dangerous as a curious adult.
- Always keep the gun pointed in a safe direction - remember, a bullet can penetrate ceilings, floors, walls, windows and doors.
- Always keep your finger off the trigger until ready to shoot
Why Teach Your Child Gun Safety?
While you may not own a gun or have one in your home, unknown to you, a home you visit may have a gun.
There is no particular age to talk with your child about gun safety. A good time to introduce the subject is the first time he/she shows an interest in firearms, even toy pistols or rifles. Talking openly and honestly about gun safety with your child is usually more effective than just order him/her to "stay out of the gun closet" and leaving it at that. Such statements may just stimulate a child's natural curiosity to investigate further.
Explaining the rules and answering a child's questions helps remove the mystery surrounding guns. Any rules set for your own child should also apply to friends who visit your home. This will help keep your child from being pressured into showing a gun to a friend.
What to Teach Your Child About Gun Safety Outside the Home?
If your child sees a gun outside the home, teach him or her the following:
- STOP! Don't Touch! Leave the Area! Tell an Adult!