17 October 2011

Not for the weak of heart

You know, there are 4 universal, safe gun handling rules that just can't really be improved upon. There have been a number of minor variations and word changes over the years but the rules are basically unchanged. Please allow me to post those rules here for you to review:

1.Treat every weapon as if it were loaded. (Some will say 'ALL weapons are always loaded'. They are not. A gun is either loaded or it's not but they should be treated the same either way)
2. Never let the muzzle cover anything that you are not willing to destroy.
3. Keep your finger off the trigger and outside the trigger guard until you are ready to shoot.
4. Be sure of your target and what is in line with your target.

These rules are all equally important but it seems to me that the first 3 really go hand-in-hand as they are directly related to handling of the weapon. The 4th rule being more related to actual shooting. The picture below is the result of all three of the "handling" rules being violated.

The owner of the knee in the pic (or at least the leg where a knee used to be) was retrieving a .223 rifle from the car and pounded a round into his knee at point-blank range. 
Lots to learn here like don't have a round chambered in any firearm when it is in the car unless it is your HOLSTERED sidearm. Obeying any ONE of the first 3 rules may have prevented this horrible accident. Obeying all 3 of them certainly would have.

This young man is in his mid-twenties and will almost certainly have to have the remainder of his leg amputated. The complete knee and the end of the femur where it attaches to the knee is completely gone. Not badly damaged...GONE!

You can only imagine what this young man's thoughts are now. Folks, let me see if I can word this in such a way as to make it sink in. Gun safety is not a part-time activity. DO NOT try to rationalize when you should be safe with guns. Just do it, ALL THE TIME!! All the time like every time you TOUCH a gun regardless of whether you are alone or with someone. Regardless of what condition you THINK the gun may be in. If you are drinking or using controlled substances of any kind, your guns are off limits! PERIOD! If you are depressed or angry or, for whatever reason, you don't have your mind in the game. your guns are off-limits! There are no second chances, no "overs", no 'I didn't mean to'. Gunshot wounds are forever. A few folks get to live to tell about it and others don't.

Cope Reynolds (Desertscout)
Southwest Weapons and Security Associates

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