Firearm Safety

 

Firearm Safety
 
The Gunsight rules are well thought out and have gained many followers and endorsements:
  1. All guns are always loaded. Even if they are not, treat them as if they are.
  2. Never let the muzzle cover anything you are not willing to destroy. (For those who insist that this particular gun is unloaded, see Rule 1.)
  3. Keep your finger off the trigger till your sights are on the target. This is the Golden Rule. Its violation is directly responsible for about 60 percent of inadvertent discharges.
  4. Identify your target, and what is behind it. Never shoot at anything that you have not positively identified.
-Col. Jeff Cooper, USMC Retired, 1920-2006
 
The fact that Col. Cooper liked the CZ 75 and based the design of the Bren Ten on it did not influence our decision to endorse and adopt his rules for safe gun handling for our employees. (but it didn't hurt)
 
Most of us know these rules by heart.  If they are new to you, learn them. Spend some time thinking about them.  What could happen if you break one of the rules?  The chances for a tragedy go up exponentially when 2 or more are broken.
 
Complacency is the cause of most accidents, firearms related and otherwise.  Be conscious and very deliberate in your actions when handling firearms, do not rely on habit or muscle memory.  Do not rely completely on the mechanical safety, follow the rules regardless of the position of the safety lever.
 
Before handling any CZ firearm read the instruction manual carefully and observe the following safety instructions. Improper and careless handling of the firearms could result in unintentional discharge and could cause injury, death or damage to property.
 
Safety instructions for handgun handling
 
Always follow the safety instructions for your safety and the safety of others.
 
  • Always handle your pistol as if it were loaded.
  • Never point your pistol at anything you do not intend to shoot.
  • Never take anyone's word that a gun is unloaded.
  • Always make sure that your pistol is not loaded before laying it down, or handing it to another person.
  • Always keep and carry your pistol empty, with the hammer forward except when you intend to shoot.
  • Never abuse your pistol by using it for any purpose other than shooting.
  • Never leave the pistol cocked and ready to fire unattended.
  • Before loading your pistol be sure that the barrel bore, chamber, and action are clean and clear of obstructions. After shooting, clean the pistol as soon as possible.
  • Always use only clean, dry, original high quality commercially manufactured ammunition, which is appropriate to the caliber of your pistol.
  • Never drink alcholic beverages or take drugs before or during shooting.
  • Always wear safety glasses and ear protection when shooting.
  • Always keep the safety on when the pistol is loaded and cocked, until you are ready to fire. Keep your pistol pointed in a safe direction when disengaging the manual safety.
  • Always keep clear and keep others clear of the ejection port.
  • Never squeeze the trigger or put your finger in the trigger guard until you are aiming at a target and ready to shoot.
  • Always be absolutely sure of your target, and the area behind it, before you squeeze the trigger. A bullet could travel through or past your target up to several hundred meters.
  • Never shoot at a hard surface such as rock, or a liquid surface such as water.
  • Never fire your pistol near an animal unless it is trained to accept noise.
  • Never indulge in "horseplay" while holding your pistol.
  • Failure to fire: always hold pistol, keeping it pointed towards the target, or a safe open area and wait 30 seconds when the pistol fails to fire. If a handfire (slow ignition) has occurred, the round will fire within 30 seconds. If the round does not fire, remove the magazine, eject the round and examine the primer; if the firing pin indent on the primer is light, or off center, or non-existent, have the pistol examined by a competent gunsmith.
  • Always make sure your pistol is not loaded before cleaning, storing or travelling.
  • Always keep and store your pistol and ammunition in separate locked receptacles out of reach and sight of children and untrained people.
  • Never alter any parts of your pistol as the safety and proper function of your pistol could be seriously compromised.
  • Always be aware that corrosion, use of damaged ammunition, dropping the pistol on hard surfaces or other "coarse treatment" could cause damage you may not see. If something like this happens allow the pistol to be examined and tested by a competent gunsmith.
 
Safety instructions for rifle/long firearm handling
 
Always follow the safety instructions for your safety and the safety of others.
 
  • Always handle your firearm as if it were loaded.
  • Never point your firearm at anything you do not intend to shoot.
  • Never take anyone's word that a gun is unloaded.
  • Always make sure that your firearm is not loaded before laying it down, or handing it to another person.
  • Always store your rifle unloaded with the striking mechanism released.
  • Never abuse your firearm by using it for any purpose other than shooting.
  • Never leave the loaded firearm unattended.
  • Prior to loading the firearms make sure that barrel bore, chamber, and action are clean and clear of obstructions. Clean a dirtied firearm immediately so that it will function properly and safely.
  • Always use only clean, dry, original high quality commercially manufactured ammunition, which is appropriate to the caliber of your firearm.
  • Never drink alcholic beverages or take drugs before or during shooting.
  • Always wear safety glasses and ear protection when shooting.
  • Always keep the safety on when the rifle is loaded with a cartridge in the chamber, until you are ready to fire. Keep firearm pointed in a safe direction when disengaging the safety.
  • Always keep clear and keep others clear of the ejection port.
  • Never squeeze the trigger or put your finger in the trigger guard until you are aiming at a target and ready to shoot.
  • Always be absolutely sure of your target, and the area behind it, before you squeeze the trigger. A bullet could travel through or past your target up to several hundred meters.
  • Never shoot at a hard surface such as rock, or a liquid surface such as water.
  • Never fire your firearms near an animal unless it is trained to accept noise.
  • Never indulge in "horseplay" while holding your firearm.
  • Failure to fire: always hold the firearm, keeping it pointed towards the target, or a safe open area and wait 30 seconds when the pistol fails to fire. If a hang fire (slow ignition) has occurred, the round will fire within 30 seconds. If the round does not fire, remove the magazine, eject the round and examine the primer; if the firing pin indent on the primer is light, or non-existent, have the firearm examined by a competent gunsmith.
  • Always make sure your firearm is not loaded before cleaning, storing or travelling.
  • Always keep and store your firearm and ammunition in separate locked receptacles out of reach and sight of children and untrained people.
  • Never alter any parts of your rifle as the safety and proper function of your rifle could be seriously compromised.
  • Always be aware that corrosion, use of damaged ammunition, dropping the rifle on hard surfaces or other "coarse treatment" could cause damage you may not see. If something like this happens let the firearm to be examined and tested by a competent gunsmith.
 
NRA Gun Safety Rules – The NRA publishes the following safety rules.  
 
The fundamental NRA rules for safe gun handling are:
 
1. ALWAYS keep the gun pointed in a safe direction.
This is the primary rule of gun safety. A safe direction means that the gun is pointed so that even if it were to go off it would not cause injury or damage. The key to this rule is to control where the muzzle or front end of the barrel is pointed at all times. Common sense dictates the safest direction, depending on different circumstances.
 
2. ALWAYS keep your finger off the trigger until ready to shoot.
When holding a gun, rest your finger on the trigger guard or along the side of the gun. Until you are actually ready to fire, do not touch the trigger.
 
3. ALWAYS keep the gun unloaded until ready to use.
Whenever you pick up a gun, immediately engage the safety device if possible, and, if the gun has a magazine, remove it before opening the action and looking into the chamber(s) which should be clear of ammunition. If you do not know how to open the action or inspect the chamber(s), leave the gun alone and get help from someone who does.
 
When using or storing a gun, always follow these NRA rules:
 
  • Know your target and what is beyond.
  • Be absolutely sure you have identified your target beyond any doubt. Equally important, be aware of the area beyond your target. This means observing your prospective area of fire before you shoot. Never fire in a direction in which there are people or any other potential for mishap. Think first. Shoot second.
  • Know how to use the gun safely.
  • Before handling a gun, learn how it operates. Know its basic parts, how to safely open and close the action and remove any ammunition from the gun or magazine. Remember, a gun's mechanical safety device is never foolproof. Nothing can ever replace safe gun handling.
  • Be sure the gun is safe to operate.
  • Just like other tools, guns need regular maintenance to remain operable. Regular cleaning and proper storage are a part of the gun's general upkeep. If there is any question concerning a gun's ability to function, a knowledgeable gunsmith should look at it.
  • Use only the correct ammunition for your gun.
  • Only BBs, pellets, cartridges or shells designed for a particular gun can be fired safely in that gun. Most guns have the ammunition type stamped on the barrel. Ammunition can be identified by information printed on the box and sometimes stamped on the cartridge. Do not shoot the gun unless you know you have the proper ammunition.
  • Wear eye and ear protection as appropriate.
  • Guns are loud and the noise can cause hearing damage. They can also emit debris and hot gas that could cause eye injury. For these reasons, shooting glasses and hearing protectors should be worn by shooters and spectators.
  • Never use alcohol or over-the-counter, prescription or other drugs before or while shooting.
  • Alcohol, as well as any other substance likely to impair normal mental or physical bodily functions, must not be used before or while handling or shooting guns.
  • Store guns so they are not accessible to unauthorized persons.
  • Many factors must be considered when deciding where and how to store guns. A person's particular situation will be a major part of the consideration. Dozens of gun storage devices, as well as locking devices that attach directly to the gun, are available. However, mechanical locking devices, like the mechanical safeties built into guns, can fail and should not be used as a substitute for safe gun handling and the observance of all gun safety rules.
  • Be aware that certain types of guns and many shooting activities require additional safety precautions.
 
Cleaning:
 
  • Before cleaning your gun, make absolutely sure that it is unloaded. The gun's action should be open during the cleaning process. Also, be sure that no ammunition is present in the cleaning area.
  • Regular cleaning is important in order for your gun to operate correctly and safely. Taking proper care of it will also maintain its value and extend its life. Your gun should be cleaned every time that it is used.
  • A gun brought out of prolonged storage should also be cleaned before shooting. Accumulated moisture and dirt, or solidified grease and oil, can prevent the gun from operating properly.