Happy New Year! Thinking about jotting down those resolutions for 2012? Here are five things all shooters should consider adding to their lists:
1. Take the time to look over the basic rules of firearms safety. Hang them in your gun room, on your safe and at your range. As a gun owner, firearms safety is your responsibility.
TREAT all firearms as if they are loaded
KEEP your finger off the trigger and outside the trigger guard until you are ready to shoot.
DO NOT point at or cover anything with the muzzle you do not intend to shoot.
BE CERTAIN of your line of fire and backstop. If you aren’t sure, don’t shoot.
2. Inspect your eye protection. Some people don’t even realize that the eye protection they use on the range is not American National Standards Institute (ANSI) rated. Even if your glasses are rated, make sure they are still serviceable, have no cracks and if they are scratched up, you might want to invest in a new set of lenses.
3. Shooting without proper hearing protection can create long-term damage. Consider doubling up with both foam ear plugs and ear muffs, especially when shooting centerfire ammunition. Foam earplugs are also inexpensive. Buying several extra sets and stashing them in your glove compartment, shooting bag and purse is a great way to make sure they are always handy.
4. Resolve to be aware of the dangers of lead. Surprisingly, many shooters don’t think about how much lead dust they ingest when out shooting. Regardless of whether you shoot indoors or outside, at the very least, get in the habit f washing your hands and face thoroughly with cold, soapy water or use D-Lead wipes when you are finished shooting and leave the range.
5. SHARE! Bring a friend or coworker to the range and help them get started. No matter if it’s just plinking fun or a formal shooting sport, introduce someone to the world of shooting. Safety is always first, but get out there and share the fun!