Remember that kids + curiosity can = trouble! At this time of year that should be filled with happiness, be sure to make sure to be a responsible gun owner.
Owning a gun is your right, but storing and handling it safely is your responsibility.
Federal and state laws define the rights of a U.S. citizen to own and bear firearms. But if you own a gun, it is your absolute duty and responsibility to see that it is handled and stored in a safe manner, at all times. Every private citizen who owns or handles any type of firearm, whether it's a handgun, shotgun, or rifle, should participate in a recognized training program made available in most areas by the National Rifle Association. (Law enforcement and military agencies conduct their own on going training programs.) Once you have received training, practice what you have learned.
Guidelines for keeping a gun at home.
You and your spouse should have professional training on handling the gun, even if there is no intention to use it. If you have children, you have probably already taught them respect for a gun, and discussed the consequences of disregarding your wishes. If not, do so immediately. You may have taught them (or had them professionally instructed) how to use the gun safely, and can trust them implicitly to use it only under your direct supervision. You may have even instructed them to use the gun in case of an emergency, such as home protection. But these are rare circumstances. And what about others' children, or thrill-seeking youths, or inexperienced adults from outside your own home? They may be in your home when you're not there. Even some guns on the street in the hands of under-age youths were taken from the home. Add the elements of alcohol and/or drugs and/or peer pressure, and otherwise sensible people, especially the young ones, are prone to changing their normal behavior. That's when accidents happen. You must be sure your gun cannot be subject to any of these circumstances. And if your child encounters a gun somewhere else, you must be sure he or she knows how to react properly to stay out of danger and out of trouble.
Guidelines for secure storage.
Secure means no one can get to your gun who should not.
1. Clear your gun by removing all the ammunition and then checking the chamber to be sure it's empty. For a revolver, look through each chamber in the cylinder. For a pistol, rifle, or shotgun, look into the chamber at the back end of the barrel or barrels, and also look to see that the magazine is removed. Take your time and pay attention to each step.
2. Lock up your gun in a theft-proof container out of sight, and out of reach of children. Store it in a manner that will keep it out of anyone's hands other than your own or someone you want to have access to it.
3. Lock up your ammunition in a different location so that anyone who should not have it can't get to it.
4. Some people use gun locks, and some states mandate their use. Gun locks are not as secure as a theft-proof container, so use both when necessary.
CAUTION: Gunlocks can give a false sense of security. Some, especially those covering the trigger, do not always fit tightly enough to prevent movement. If they can be moved, the trigger can also move. If the gun is loaded and cocked when the trigger is moved, the gun may fire even with the gun lock in place. A gun lock alone will not prevent anyone from handling the gun, and it will not necessarily prevent them from removing the gun from your home. So keep your gun locked up where no one can get to it.
1. Do NOT touch the gun. Explain that if they touch it, it may fire and hurt someone.
2. Leave the scene. Explain that this will clear them of the risk of someone else touching the gun.
3. Tell an adult. Explain that an adult can get help quickly to prevent an accident.
Kitchen - household cleaners and disinfectants.
Bathroom - prescription and over-the-counter drugs and medicines.
Laundry area - cleansers and bleaches.
Basement/workroom - power tools, sharp devices, and flammable aerosols.
Garage/utility shed - petroleum products, power equipment, and pesticides.
Patio - propane gas tanks or charcoal lighter fluid.
(Safety info from Women Against Gun Control, http://www.wagc.com)
From all of us at EAA Corp, we wish you the very best for the holiday season!