Firearms are powerful tools that require responsible handling and storage, particularly at home. With proper precautions, firearm owners can help prevent accidents and ensure their weapons remain out of the wrong hands. Whether you’re a seasoned gun owner or just starting, this guide will provide essential information to help you safely store your firearms at home.
Understanding and following the dos of storing firearms is crucial to ensure they’re kept secure and out of the wrong hands. This protects you and your loved ones and helps promote responsible gun ownership in the wider community.
- Store Your Firearm In A Gun Mount
A gun mount is a locking device that securely attaches your firearm to a fixed location, such as a wall or a cabinet. An example is the AR 15 mount, which keeps your gun out of reach of unauthorized individuals while also ensuring that it’s easily accessible in case of an emergency.
Mounting your firearm helps prevent accidental discharge by keeping the gun pointed in a safe direction and ensuring the trigger is inaccessible.
- Ensure All Firearms Are Unloaded
An unloaded firearm is secure and less likely to discharge accidentally. Even if a gun is unloaded, it’s always best to double-check before storing it, as mistakes can happen, and it’s better to be safe than sorry. Remove any ammunition from the gun and check the chamber to ensure it’s empty. You should also visually inspect the firearm to ensure no rounds in the magazine or cylinder.
- Install Trigger Locks On Firearms Not In Use
Installing trigger locks on firearms not in use is recommended, as it increases gun safety by providing an additional layer of security and reduces the risk of accidents. Trigger locks are easy to install and affordable, and they can also be used in conjunction with other storage methods, such as a locked container or safe. This is especially crucial for those with children in the house or with people unfamiliar with firearms.
- Store Ammunition In A Separate Location From Firearms
If the ammunition isn’t near the gun, it’s less likely that someone will accidentally load a gun and cause an unintentional firing. Storing ammunition separately can also prevent theft. If an intruder gains access to your firearms, they’ll not be able to access the projectile, which can prevent them from using the guns to commit crimes.
- Always Store Firearms With The Barrel Pointing In A Safe Direction
Whenever you store a firearm, make sure its barrel is pointed in a direction where it can’t cause harm to people or property, even if an accidental discharge occurs. This ensures that if a firearm were to discharge unintentionally, it wouldn’t cause any harm to yourself, your family members, or your property.
Ultimately, it’s up to every gun owner to take responsibility for safely storing and using their firearms. By doing so, they contribute to a safer society.
As a responsible gun owner, it’s essential to understand not only what to do when it comes to storing firearms but also what not to do. There are many common mistakes that gun owners make when storing their firearms, and these mistakes can lead to accidents, theft, and other serious consequences. Below are some things you shouldn’t do when storing guns:
- Do Not Leave Firearms Unattended
Leaving firearms unattended can lead to a range of risks and potential hazards. For example, children or unauthorized individuals could access a gun while alone, resulting in accidental discharge and injury as they play with the weapon. It can also increase the risk of theft or burglary as firearms are valuable and sought-after items; leaving them unsecured can make your home a target.
- Do Not Store Firearms In An Easily Accessible Location
Storing firearms in an easily accessible location increases the risk of accidents, theft, or misuse. Also, children or unauthorized individuals who come across a gun may be curious and attempt to use it, leading to severe injury or death. Similarly, storing firearms in an easily accessible location can make them vulnerable to theft, leading to their misuse in criminal activity that may result in weapon charges pointing back to you as the owner. To ensure safety, firearms should be stored with a locking device, such as a trigger lock, cable lock, or chamber lock.
- Do Not Use Cardboard Boxes For Storage
Unlike metal containers and safes, cardboard boxes are highly susceptible to moisture damage as they absorb fluids quickly. If firearms and ammunition are stored in wet boxes, they’ll take in moisture, eventually leading to rust and corrosion. Therefore, it’s essential to avoid using cardboard boxes for storing firearms and ammunition as it can cause damage to them.
- Do Not Neglect Regular Maintenance And Inspection
Firearms require regular maintenance and inspections to ensure they’re in good working condition and free of critical issues. Even though your guns and ammunition are stored properly, it’s essential to regularly check for dirt or rust and inspect if any parts need replacing.
Understanding the don’ts of storing firearms is just as important as knowing the dos. By avoiding common mistakes and pitfalls, gun owners can ensure their firearms remain secure and out of the wrong hands.
Responsible firearm storage is crucial for ensuring the safety and security of the firearms and the people in the household. By following the five dos and don’ts of firearm storage, gun owners can help prevent accidents, unauthorized access, and damage to their firearms.