Handling guns the secure way

September, 2018

The mention of a gun, a firearm, eludes a negative perception in any conversation. People associate guns with danger, fear and crime. While firearms have been used to instigate criminal activities, it is important to acknowledge the noble and respectable roles that fire arms play in the society.

There are more than one billion firearms in the world, the vast majority of which are in civilian hands, according to the Smalls Arms Survey by a Geneva based firm. The Survey estimates that of the one billion firearms in global circulation as of 2017, 857 million (85 per cent) are in civilian hands, 133 million (13 per cent) are in military arsenals, and 23 million (2 per cent) are owned by law enforcement agencies. It is therefore very crucial to understand the role that firearms play in our society and how we can ensure responsible use of firearms.

Fire arms have been used to guard our national borders, prevent and deter crimes from happening in homes and offices, offer security of valuables or cash-in-transit, for personal safety and self -defense, target practice, recreational shooting, among other uses.

For us to enjoy the benefit of using fire arms, we must ensure legal and responsible use of fire arms. How do we achieve this?

  • First step in firearm safety starts with legal acquisition. Ensure that you apply for possession of a fire arm as per the guiding laws of your resident country.
  • Any gun-owner should ensure that they are sufficiently trained in usage of the gun.
  • Always keep the gun unloaded and locked up in a cabinet, safe, gun vault, or storage case.
  • Lock the bullets in a place separate from the gun.
  • Hide the keys to the locked storage to avoid access to unauthorized personnel.
  • In the case of theft, always report the incident to the relevant authorities.
  • Do not operate the fire arm when in a drunk and disorderly condition.
  • Always keep the gun pointed in a safe direction.
  • Always keep your fingers off the trigger until ready to shoot.
  • Never point a gun at anything you are not willing to shoot at.
  • Be sure of your target and what is beyond and around it.
  • Always keep the muzzle pointed in a safe direction.
  • Treat every gun as though it can fire anytime.
  • Always wear eye and ear protection during target practice.
  • Ensure that the gun is serviced regularly.
  • Ensure proper usage of the gun as and when necessary.