If you’ve recently decided to purchase a handgun for personal protection, you may find yourself a little worried about how to safely own and carry a gun. There are general safety tips that apply to all gun owners, but you should also look at specific carry policies in your city.
Guns should always be stored behind a locked cabinet when not being worn. This is especially important if there are children in the house. Ideally, ammunition should be stored in a separate place as well. This will prevent anyone from “accidentally” loading and firing the weapon. When you do go out, think about where you want to wear your firearm. Some people like a standard hip holster while others prefer to keep their guns in concealed carry coats and jackets with special compartments. You may have to try several arrangements before you determine what feels most natural for you.
Keep in mind the adage that you should never aim your gun at something that you don’t plan to damage or kill. In other words, don’t ever aim your gun at anything living (people or animals) unless you believe it’s a life-or-death situation for you or those you are protecting. Assume all guns are loaded (even if you know you have just taken the bullets out) and handle them with great care. 17% of firearm accidents are the result of people believing the gun was not loaded.
There are plenty of gun safety classes available online and in person. Just like renewing your CPR training, you should schedule a weapon education refresher class each year. If you take a class locally, you’re likely to get information on any changing local and state policies about gun ownership.
Owning a gun comes with a lot of responsibility. It’s important to keep your weapon secure at all times and to keep your knowledge of the laws up to date.