Gun Safety For Children

By Julia Smith

Whether you do or do not own a gun, it's crucial to teach your child about gun safety. While you may be responsible with your firearms, other gun owners may not be. Protect your child by learning and sharing these gun safety tips.

gun-safety

Gun Safety in the Home

  • Lock guns up out of reach of children. Hiding is not enough.
  • Remove all bullets. Do not leave ammunition in the gun.
  • Lock ammunition in a separate place from guns.
  • Children and teens should not have access to keys to the guns or bullets.
  • Periodically teach gun safety and evaluate the child’s curiosity level.

Gun Safety Out of the Home

Your children may come in contact with a gun in a relative’s, friends, or neighbor’s home. It is ok to ask other parents if guns are present in the home and if the guns are locked up. It is ok to decide if it is safe for your child to spend time there.

Teach your child to do the following if he/she sees a gun:

  • Stop
  • Don’t touch the gun
  • Get away from the area
  • Tell an adult

Pretend Play with Guns

  • Even if you choose to not to let your children play with toy guns their friends may have them. Teach your children that real guns can seriously hurt or kill a person. TV and video games can make that seem unreal to children.
  • Pellet guns and BB guns are not regulated by the government and can cause injury and death. The US Consumer Product Safety Commission recommends that children should be 16 years old before operating these devices.
  • Paint guns cause traumatic eye injuries. Always wear protective eye gear when operating paint guns.

Safe Gun-Handling Rules

  • Always treat every gun as if it is loaded.
  • Never point a gun at another person or anything you do not intend to shoot.
  • Keep your finger off the trigger until the moment you are ready to shoot.

Hunting Safety

  • Minors must complete a Hunter Safety class before they can obtain a hunting license in Utah.
  • Minors must be 12 years old to obtain a big game license. There is no age requirement for small game licenses.
  • A minor under 18 years old may not possess a weapon unless they have permission from a parent and are accompanied by a parent while the weapon is in their posse.
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