Getting bored of the usual leisure time activities you’ve been doing your whole life? Do you want to try your hand at shooting this time? Are you looking to try and transfer your airsoft skills to real-life guns?
Many Americans tend to go to gun ranges now like they would play sports or go hiking. In 2018, the gun range industry in the US earned $1 billion worth of total revenue.
It’s that big of a sport.For some, shooting at the range becomes a form of stress relief from work.
It’s a good idea to familiarize yourself with gun range safety before you step into the shooting area. Below, we’ve got a list of 7 safety tips to follow whenever you go to the shooting range. Read on to find out about how you can keep yourself and fellow shooters safe.
1. Keep Your Muzzle Pointed at a Safe Direction
This is one of the most basic shooting range rules to ensure everyone’s safety. If everyone always kept this rule in mind, the number of firearm accidents in-range wouldn’t be as high. The rule is to always point your firearm in a safe direction.
That means that when someone calls your name, don’t turn to them with the muzzle. When you check out another shooter from across the range, keep your muzzle down. If you want to show your friends your target board, remember to still keep your gun aimed in a safe direction.
It’s important to make it a habit to know where your muzzle is always pointing. What’s even more important is to know your muzzle is always pointing at a safe direction. The best direction to point your gun is up or down.
This is every gun holder’s responsibility. Always keep this in mind because accidents will still happen. You may trip but you should still have some control over where your muzzle points at the least.
2. Wear Gun Range Safety Protection Gear
It’s not a bad idea to go to the range as a hobby or to develop your aim. The bad idea is to not invest in good gear. Often, range rules need shooters to use important bits of gear like eye and ear protection.
Shooting glasses shield eyes from falling shots, clay target chips, and ruptured cases. They also keep solvent, springs, and spring tension parts from contacting your eyes. Also, hanging out at the range without the proper ear protectors can damage your hearing.
Protect yourself with these pieces of gear. They can also make your shooting experience easier. You can look through this selection of gear for ones that will best fit you and your tastes.
3. Unload Your Firearms Until You Use Them
A general rule for handling your firearm in this regard is to treat it as if it’s loaded. Even if it isn’t, do so anyway. This is a kind of safety measure for when you do forget to unload your gun in reality.
While you’re waiting for your turn on the range, keep your firearms unloaded. When you’ve finished with shooting practice, unload any remaining bullets right away.
This gun range safety tip bleeds over as a gun storage tip as well.
4. Familiarize Yourself with Gun Range Terms
Whenever you visit any shooting range, check their range safety rules for the terms they use. Most terms are common among many ranges and are well-known among shooters. These are terms like “ceasefire” and “commence firing”.
When you hear “clear”, it means that all shooters need to put their firearms’ safe mode on. A shooting range is a “cold range” is when nobody is firing or standing at the firing line. A “hot range” is when shooters have permission to start firing.
There may be terms that are unique to other ranges. However, many owners make it a point to keep the commonly-known terms to avoid confusion. Knowing the terms used in shooting ranges can help you integrate better with the community and avoid accidents.
5. Be Careful When Your Gun Doesn’t Fire
Imagine that you’re at the range and you’ve got your target in your sights. You’re ready to shoot. You pull the trigger.
However, nothing happens. Your gun doesn’t shoot and you’re disappointed and confused. When this happens, be very careful when handling your gun.
A gun that didn’t fire when it should have has a chance to do it at any time. Remember tip #1 before you open the action and dispose of the cartridge. If your firearm does this often, you may need to clean it or change your ammunition.
6. Use the Correct Ammunition for Your Firearm
Always make it a point to use the right ammunition for your gun. If you’ve read your firearm’s instruction manual, you’ll know why this is important. Allow us to give a quick rundown of the reasons to avoid the wrong ammunition anyway.
Using the wrong type of ammunition can destroy a gun. It can also cause serious injury to the user. Shooting range rules and regulations post this to avoid accidents.
Don’t try to experiment with ammunition that seems like the standard for your firearm. Remember, it only takes a second to check if you have the right cartridge in your gun to avoid these possibilities. Take a second to check for the right caliber or gauge before you shoot.
7. Respect the Range and Other Patrons
This won’t always be present in all range rules postings however it’s one worth noting. Respect the shooting range, no matter which one it is. By doing this, you’re taking part in creating a pleasant environment.
A way of showing your respect for the range is to follow its rules. Avoid doing anything prohibited in the rules of the range. Cleaning up after yourself is another way to show respect.
In essence, you can treat the range as if you were in your house. Respect others and treat them like they’re your friends. Be courteous enough to encourage an amicable community.
However, you must avoid giving unwanted advice unless someone asked for it. If you are not the type to be social, then keep to yourself. Exclusion of this rule is when you spot any dangerous activity.
Practice Safe Shooting
Those are our 7 gun range safety tips for shooters at all experience levels. Remember that these rules exist to protect you, others around you, and the range. Follow them well and you will find yourself injury-free in this pursuit.
For more tips on guns and safety, feel free to check out our other posts today.