Q. How do I safely use my new gun?
A. Their are no “accidents” in firearms if you follow these simple rules every time and I recommend you practice these so they are second nature before you ever fire you new gun. Seek out NRA Certified Instructors in your area and get some professional guidance.
1. ALWAYS keep the gun pointed in a safe direction.
2. ALWAYS keep your finger off the trigger until ready to shoot.
3. ALWAYS keep the gun unloaded until ready to use.
4. Know your target and what is beyond.
See this link to review and the source of these points : http://www.nrahq.org/education/guide.asp
This all sounds pretty simple and basic, right? Well it is !!! Think about it for a minute, if your gun is always pointed in a safe direction (RULE #1) , and you follow rules 2,3 &4 no problem. By keeping YOUR FINGER OFF THE TRIGGER (RULE #2) until ready to shoot, the gun can’t go off by itself (ok, yes, there is a slight chance of a mechanical malfunction as with anything), but if you have followed rule #1, again no real problem. RULE #3 makes total sense to everyone, I hope, if the gun is not loaded, it can not fire. So when are we ready to use the gun? In a match setting, that will be when you are called to the line to “Load and make Ready”. That is when you load the gun under the supervision of an Instructor or an RO (Range Officer in USPSA and ZSA) or SO (Safety Officer in IDPA), but while doing that you are still following RULES # 1 &2. Now for RULE # 4, know your target and what’s beyond, that means you should always shoot at an appropriate target and have a safe and adequate backstop. If you choose to come out and shoot in a match of some type, that will all be taken care of for you by the fine folks that set the matches up according to established safety guidelines.
Quick review time,,,,, muzzle in safe direction, finger off trigger, unloaded ’til ready to use, know your target. Now that really is not hard at all is it? If everyone would just do these simple things, there will never be a problem. So please, re-read these simple rules and follow them, together we can all enjoy the shooting sports for all the fun and competitive friendship they can provide, while honing your skills in a safe environment. It’s OUR Second Amendment, given to us by The Founding Fathers. Preserve it in a positive manner and always set the right example for the new shooter.
God Bless America and all She stands for.