Negligent Discharge Of A Gun And How It Happens

Are you a gun owner?

I want you to think seriously about negligent discharges and how they happen.

They don’t happen from failed safety mechanisms.

They don’t happen because you dropped the gun.

The gun doesn’t just “go off”.

They do happen when they are allowed to happen.
It is almost always a human finger pressing the trigger.

I was reading the latest issue of Concealed Carry Magazine and I wanted to share with you the pertinent information from an article “How It Happens” (the negligent discharge of a firearm).

Think it won’t happen to you? Hopefully not!

Here’s how it happens:

Information sourced from The United States Concealed Carry Association


Counting On The Chamber Being Empty

Any time you press a trigger but do not intend to shoot, you’re counting on that chamber being empty.

The following has to be front and center in your mind every time you handle a gun:

“If I press this trigger, a bullet will come out of that end unless I’ve personally ensured this specific gun is unloaded.”

This is the nexus of almost every single negligent discharge that occurs: Someone presses the trigger without personally guaranteeing that the gun is unloaded. It sounds ridiculously simple, but that’s how it happens.


When A Loaded Gun Is Left Out Of Sight

Any time you load a gun, set it down and walk away, you’re drastically increasing the chances of a negligent discharge.

“gun owner leaves gun loaded and then forgets he did so”

Always check the gun to see if it’s loaded, even if you think it’s not.


During Disassembly / Field Stripping

When you combine not knowing the exact condition of the firearm you’re disassembling – with loading a firearm and then leaving it unattended, you’re almost guaranteeing a negligent discharge.

When some bonehead shot his finger off trying to field-strip his loaded pistol…
You get the idea…


Loading, Holstering and Unholstering

There’s no secret to doing this safely:

Keep your finger off of the trigger and indexed on the slide unless you intend to fire, and ensure that your holster is in good working order.

(You did train on your holster with an empty gun before trying to put a loaded gun in there, right?)


Trigger Catching On Article Of Clothing

You know those little plastic drawstring toggles that you see on the hips of jackets, pullovers and coats? They need to go.

The trigger on your striker-fired pistol doesn’t know the difference between your finger and that little plastic toggle.

Since it’s so easy for them to make their way into the rigger guards of pistols that are being reholstered, they have to be removed from all articles of clothing as soon as possible.


On a related safety note, I have several of the following pistol safes. I believe it to be the best general purpose handgun safe there is for quick access. The biometric fingerprint works EVERY TIME and is fast to open. Amazing…

Pistol Safe: Quick Access Biometric, Button-press, or Key

Add your own gun safety comments – how they relate to a potential negligent discharge…


  1. i was taught WEAPON SAFETY back in 1959 by my uncle fresh from the USMC, i was taught all the same rules he was, just not as harshly

    i still follow those rules to this day and EVERY SINGLE TIME I PICK A FIREARM that is not mine i CHECK THE CHAMBER FIRST THING

    1. Heck, I even check my own just because I can be forgetful sometimes. Even if I’ve checked them, I check them again.

  2. When my brother was about 10 or 12, my father took him deer hunting. My brother was behind my father when his gun went off. The bullet missed my father’s leg by inches. Can you imagine if my dad had actually been shot? All alone in the wilderness, bleeding out, with no one to help him except a pre-teen who might not have even known how to get back to civilization by himself?

    I never did hear how the gun went off. At the time I was a teenage girl and probably just assumed that the gun went off all by itself. I remember my father was angry, but I assumed it was because my brother had the rifle pointing in the wrong direction. Next time I talk to him, I will ask him exactly what happened. We both live alone and so we check in with each other every morning at 4:30 a.m.

    1. I asked my brother about his hunting accident. He said that he had forgotten to put the safety on and as they were walking through some brush, the trigger caught on a twig or something. He said he was 10 or 11 at the time — about what I remembered.

      He didn’t remember it as a near tragedy. He said Dad bawled him out real good and then said, “You’re walking ahead of me from now on.”

  3. Gun ownership comes with a huge responsibility toward safety. Know the rules, know your weapon, know how to secure ANY weapon and keep yourself and all others around you safe.

    Also remember that shooting is a perishable skill and requires regular practice and refreshing. Have fun, enjoy it, but keep the practice safe.

  4. You left off a major cause of negligent discharges. Drinking while handling a loaded firearm.

    Two accident prone guns: Single action .45 LC Ruger Blackhawk and Remington 700, 30-06.

    My single action Ruger is impossible to SAFELY un-cock, especially if you’ve had one or more beers. Best course of action is to leave it unloaded. Get yourself a Glock or 1911.

    A loaded Remington 700 is like the Ruger’s evil twin, just waiting for that “Remington moment”.

    They both are nice looking guns. That’s all I do with them now… just look at them.

    1. I don’t own a Blackhawk, but I do own other makes of single action revolvers. Would I be wrong if I guessed that the height of the hammer spur causes your thumb to contact (become pinched against) the rear sight before hammer is completely down? If so, you can purchase drop in hammers with lower hammer spurs. This is a common alteration for scoped handguns.


      Try this method of de-cocking. Place your weak hand thumb over the hammer channel in the frame while lowering the hammer past half cock position, take your finger off the trigger and lower the hammer to rest. The internal hammer block will take over if the trigger finger is not depressing the trigger.

      You probably know all this already, just trying to be helpful.

      1. @ Dennis

        Thanks for the comment.

        Coordinating my trigger finger with the heavy pull down of the hammer spring while trying to de-cock the weapon while live rounds are still in the cylinder is where my problem is. It has to be done perfectly or else the hammer will move past the last stop and strike the live round, discharging the weapon. It is not like we see in the movies where the shooter simply de-cocks the weapon one handed while it is still pointed at the perps head. It doesn’t work that way… at least not for me. I have to use both hands and de-cock it while it is pointed at the ground or in a clearing barrel. There are several holes in the floors at places I’ve lived over the years to attest to this, back in the day when I was a wild and wooly young whippersnapper.

        Best thing I’ve found is to leave it unloaded and locked up. It’s not a problem when I’m at the range because I simply make sure I fire every round until the hammer falls on a spent round, then I remove the empty brass and re-load.

        I have a more reliable double action (different caliber) with a pop out cylinder which is safer to load because you don’t have to cycle the hammer back to turn the cylinder like I have to with the Ruger.

        Anyway, even though I stated above that these two weapons are accident prone, the truth is there is no such thing as an “accidental” discharge. All discharges are either intentional or, as the article title says… negligent. I have to admit, trying to de-cock a single action pistol one handed with live rounds in the cylinder is negligent. Either shoot them all downrange or don’t shoot any of them. Anyone who knowingly uses the older Remington 700 after the “Remington moment” was discovered and proven is being negligent if they haven’t taken steps to have their weapon checked and or retro-fitted by Remington. Having said that, rather than go through all the trouble of retro-fitting my old rifle I choose to leave it locked away for life and affixed a tag to the trigger guard that says this gun is subject to the “Remington moment”, use it at the peril of everyone around you. I keep it locked up as a “throw away” or last ditch defense weapon and if I ever use it in that regard the “Remington moment” doesn’t matter.

        1. I have a Blackhawk and have been able to lower the hammer without it discharging but my question would be why would you be cocking a single action in the house while it was loaded to begin with?.

        2. @ Poorman

          For the same vague reasons a lot of young people do idiotic things. Luckily I have survived my young days and didn’t hurt anyone except the floor. I don’t do that any more.

    2. “My single action Ruger is impossible to SAFELY un-cock”


      1. @ GrayMan

        Safely is the operative word. I just make sure I fire every round when I load it now and don’t keep it laying around loaded in the house. Acquired it 46 years ago when I was a wild, young whippersnapper. Have no intentions of selling it. Thanks anyway.

    3. Glocks are VERY unforgiving of mistakes during handling. The short 5.5lb trigger pull is a slightly heavy single action trigger. The “safe action” tigger is a joke.

      To fire a DA/SA auto in DA mode, you REALLY have to want the 🔫 to fire.
      Glocks were designed by Europeans, where I understand it is uncommon to carry with a round chambered.

      This is not a slam on Glock, fanboys. They are reliable, reasonably priced guns. But you fanboys take Glock “Perfection” waaaay too seriously. Glock is NOT the Alpha and Omega. Block has had more than their share of problems. They have never lost a product liability lawsuit, but Glock has settled a lot of them.

  5. I was fortunate to be raised in a hunting family/extended family; gun safety was priority one for all hunting forays; be it shotguns or rifles. Handguns came later in life. Also as a kid I was a gun club member, we had our own range and trap shooting area, we trained and tested in gun safety, completion shot rimfire, center fire and trap. Scariest shotgun was a single shot 16 gauge with a hammer; would keep your right thumb under the closed hammer to prevent brush from grabbing the hammer for an unexpected boom.

    The hunting safety basics constantly drilled into my head were;

    Always consider a gun loaded, even if you verified it’s unloaded.

    Always point a loaded or unloaded gun somewhere non-lethal, usually at the ground.

    Never, ever point a gun (loaded or unloaded) at anyone, unless you plan to fire.

    Do not climb a fence with a loaded gun. If alone, lay it on the ground under the fence one post down from crossing, cross, then retrieve. Or, unload it if you can’t place it on the ground, then cross the fence, reload. Or if not alone, hand the gun to the person on the other side (both yours and theirs).

    Know who you are hunting with, keep them in your sight and to your side at all times (not in front or in back). Watch your shot swing radius, limit it to your shooting zone in front of you, do not cross into another persons shooting area.

    A given; ID your target, then shoot, know your shot direction and distance.

    Watch your hunting partners to see if excitement/adrenalin overrides safety, if so, find a new partner.

    For a new to firearms person;

    Take safety courses, range shoot with an instructor, then hunt with someone experienced.

  6. Ahhhh K, if ya want to get old NRP really fired up, talk about Firearm Safety or the lack of it…. Just great, my Blood Pressure just went up 100 points. Took 2 Nitro Pills, Thanks Ken.

    Fortunately the Article is about “Negligent Discharge” not “Accidental Discharge”.

    I could again go on and on about the experiment of a Springfield Armory 45-ACP XDM I have going on right now, it’s locked up in my reloading room (I’m the only person with a key to the room) fully loaded with one in the pipe, been over 4 months now and it’s still not fired or killed anyone…. Yet…. Still waiting for that to change.

    Negligent Discharge (N-G) of a firearm, Sorry but ya just can’t fix Stupid, Someone has to disengage the safety and pull the trigger, irresponsibly, regardless if it’s a holster, a piece of clothing, your finger, or a frog in your pocket, YOU did something to make that sucker go BOOM.

    I mentioned before about a Safety Meeting before one goes shooting or hunting, this is PARAMOUNT, Use your brain when you Shoot, Load, Unload, Clean, whatever.

    A firearm is ALWAYS Loaded, SIMPLE AS THAT!!!!! Even when you KNOW it’s not loaded treat it likes its loaded, do NOT do stupid stuff like putting the muzzle to your palm and pulling the trigger, Yes some STUPID dude actually did that. Made a nice messy splatter of his hand (looked like a tenderized round steak) AND in his leg; Ya Can’t Fix Stupid.

    As CrabbeNebulae said, Powder and Alcohol don’t mix well, have to tell ya in my stupid/fun days my chemistry buddy and I mixed about 4oz of Black Power and 4oz of Grain Alcohol, was one hell of a BANG…. Please do NOT try it. Seriously drinking and even cleaning a firearm is again just all out IRRESPONSIBLE, don’t do it.

    BTW, firing a firearm in a ‘warning shot’ near someone is also called Negligent Discharge, and you can/will be arrested for doing so if not as a defense for being attacked and you can prove it, BUT if your being attacked, why shoot a ‘warning shot’? Even just pulling a firearm and warning someone is called Brandishing a weapon, again ya can be arrested and charged for doing so.


    1. Well, NRP, I can attest I wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for a negligent discharge of a rifle, and lives were saved because of it.

      You see, my grandpa was hunting up in a tree with his finger on the trigger when he lowered it to climb down. The weight of the rifle on the trigger finger caused it to discharge into his foot. He rushed to the hospital in Duluth in his model T and there he met his nurse who became my grandmother. Because of his carelessness and embarrassment, he taught hunter safety to 4-H kids in 37 states for 40 years. His devotion earned him many awards, man of the year, outstanding citizen, and 4-H national recognition.

      Who knew?…….

      1. @ Stardust

        Is it not interesting the random phenomenon called the “Butterfly Effect?” It happens every day usually without recognition. The meeting of your Grandpapa and Grandmother some would call faith, other would call it ‘a chance’ meeting, and some would call it God’s Hand. Regardless one has to wonder if there actually any organization to the universe, or is it just a bunch of ‘stuff’ tossed out there at random…

        Either way; probably a good thing your Grandfather was a klutz???? Hehehehe Great story of a Negligent Discharge that worked out for the better.


        PS; Sounds like a Man that really cared…..

      2. @Stardust, Life’s events do influence and even change us… Nice to see that he turned that experience into something very positive and helped many others.

  7. An acquaintance was out shooting with his young son (about 8) when he pulled out his 22 from the back seat of the car. It shot him through his leg.

    In his defense, he said it was a malicious gun. The facts that he had it loaded in the vehicle, a round in the chamber, and pulled it out by the barrel was no reason for it to shoot him. He was just lucky and even his boy calls him a negligent SOB gun owner.

  8. If you use antique firearms, like me, you can get shot by letting one slip from your grip, and falling to the ground. They have a nasty habit of wanting to fall directly on the back of their hammers, with the muzzle pointed at you. Old weapons, like a 1873 Colt, do not have spring loaded firing pins, and “cap & Ball” weapons will fire if dropped, as that tiny ridge, holding the hammer off the cap, likes to break if struck nicely. If you dropped the weapon, I guess it is still your fault if it fires.

    1. That’s why they always had the hammer resting on an empty chamber. Maybe you should follow the lead of those who carried them 130 years ago.

      1. Well, not always. If the pistol was for something other than shooting the head off a rattler, and you were a soldier, or in dangerous places, every chamber was loaded. Not one manual of the U.S.Army from 1863, until the Spanish American War, tells soldiers to reduce their pistol rounds to 5. If you had a Model 1911, you chambered a round and left the pistol cocked, depending on the thumb safety. Then, you put another round back in the clip, and carried it that way. Cap & Balls had a resting place between the chambers for the face of the hammer to rest. But, a dropped cap & ball could still go off if dropped, as that was the nature of percussion caps and things like pebbles. I know leaving a chamber empty is a good idea. But, I never did so. I guess I was lucky only to drop empty pistols, not having the time to put them back in their holsters.

        1. I’m not sure the military has ever allowed the 1911 to be carried locked and cocked with a round chambered. To this day they don’t allow it with the M9 unless outside of the wire.

  9. Many “gun people” progress into prepping. Many “preppers” progress into gun ownership. Both groups have a learning curve in front of them as they break ground on their new endeavors. It’s easy for new gun owners to assume that because they’ve seen a hundred cowboy movies and a thousand cop shows, that they know enough to handle a gun. I’ll admit, I’ve never canned a single can of food from my garden. I’ve read untold hundreds of articles on the process, but I have no doubt that those of you experienced canners would scoff at the notion that without hours of practice, I would make a myriad of mistakes. I could, through trial and error, eventually become good at it, but the process would speed up if I had someone with experience standing over my shoulder guiding me. Get competent training.

    Many “experts” you see posting on prepper/survival blogs declare that it’s paramount that you own certain guns (usually the ones they themselves own), each of which employ totally different operation systems. I preach against this, especially for people just starting out.

    For defensive weapons, to be carried on your person at all times, find what handgun you are good with/comfortable with, and stick with it. Do all your defensive shooting range time with it. Develop a symbiotic relationship with it. How often do you miss your mouth with a toothbrush or a fork? Do you have to look at a spoon to realize it’s upside down? Of course not. It, after untold times using it, has become a part of your hand, an extension of your body. Develop your skills with it.

    Avoid light trigger pulls on defensive handguns. In the hands of an expert pistol shot punching holes in a stationary target, at 25yds an ultralight trigger pull might make the difference from a 3″ group rather than a 6″ group with a standard trigger pull. For a new shooter, it might be the difference between a 36″ group and a 18″ group. At 7yds and closer (realistic gunfight distance), under pressure, the differences will be negligible. A large number of negligent discharges with handguns can, at least in part, be traced back to alteration from factory trigger pull to a lighter one. This is more prevalent in single action and “striker fired” semi-autos. The NYPD addressed this problem by requiring all Glock pistols carried by their officers to be retrofitted with what is now called the “New York Trigger” which increases the factory trigger pull weight from 5.5lbs to 11 lbs. Probably overkill, but it also is an attempt to lessen the chances of a reflexive pulling of the trigger in intense confrontation.

    After all is said and done though, all unintended discharges are ultimately due to a mental lapse. No mechanical device can overcome that.

    I once had a veteran accident investigator opine that they were making a mistake by requiring all cars to have seat belts, airbags, etc. He said they were making it too easy to have a wreck and walk away from it. He said it would be better if they removed all the safety equipment from cars and install a 10″ dagger in the center of the steering wheel, insuring that any accident, no matter how minor, would result in the death or serious injury of the driver. He reasoned that people would stop tailgating, running red lights, speeding, etc. if they were kept constantly aware of the possible result. He went on to say they could eliminate all traffic law enforcement except the law requiring the dagger be in place.

    Many folks teach children firearm safety by first shooting a watermelon with a high powered gun to impress on them the destructive power.

    1. Quote, “How often do you miss your mouth with a toothbrush or a fork?”

      …depends on how many Martini’s have been consumed.

      (couldn’t resist)

      1. @ Ken

        I can re-re-ahh-releush-relatuw-ahhhhh relate t-t-t 2 that commmmuninte ummm commentzzz

        Gin and Popcorn time

  10. I found the training I took for my CCW was very thorough. It took 2 8-hour days and we even practiced maneuvers outside, aiming around buildings, dodging people, etc. Although I had been around guns my whole life, the training taught me a lot I didn’t know. Safety being the highest priority.

  11. The gun magazine articles are good for safety sake. From a gunsmiths perspective, I would like to add:

    Bring in your old guns to a Smith to get checked, old and worn parts replaced. For the new guns out there, take them in once every 2 years to be checked, serviced and cleaned.

    For the carry piece that rides with you every day through sweat, rain, salt spray, travel and adventure, bring it in 1-2x per year. Have parts replaced with original spec parts as close as possible. because:…

    You do NOT want to end up in court in the aftermath of a justified shoot with a highly “modified” weapon that will give the prosecutor an opening that you were a “blood-thirsty psychopath looking for a chance to take somebody out! Just look at this guy’s equipment!”

    I have both single action revolvers and Remington bolt rifles (have been fixed by Remington) I still keep an empty chamber on these weapons and the single action revolver in empty in the sock drawer. The only weapon I keep around with a round in the chamber is the one on my person at the time.

    I have seen an accidental discharge from an old Savage 99 lever rifle in 308 that was handed down from father to son. The owner kept it stored in a closet and did not inspect it or take it to a smith. It discharged at the range as it was being loaded. Finger was outside the trigger guard. Nobody died due to safe gun handling that day.

    The smith had to degunk the action and replace trigger reset springs prior to test firing the 60+ year old rifle. (overnight soak in a solvent tank and replacement parts from Brownell’s.) Sometimes, it pays to get a new weapon.

  12. May I suggest a poll? I’d like to know I’m not alone, I just negligently discharged a pistol the other night to which I would like to add another item: being an idiot. I picked up a very bad habit of pulling the trigger with the safety on but this time, being very tired and about to go to bed I forgot to put the safety on and blew off at the basement wall.

    1. I have had negligent discharges before I got sober, none sense. Thank God no one was ever hurt. I never trust a mechanical safety. Anything mechanical can and eventually will fail.

    2. @ Bean

      I just have to ask, how and why in the world would anyone get into a “habit of pulling the trigger with the safety on”? Seriously I’m sitting here on my fat azz just in awl wondering why anyone would do this. If the safety is on, what’s the point? To make sure the safety is on? Obviously you started to do this at some time or another, so again, why would one do this?

      Also why would you have the safety off and “about to go to bed I forgot to put the safety on” do you normally keep the safety off during the day, ‘just because’? Just trying to figure out the thinking here ok, not trying to chastise you. But I’m really interested if there is a valid reasoning?

      Glad you only killed the wall (this time) and not a person or a pet, or yourself. Pulling the trigger is a deadly action, even for a wall.


      1. NRP: outside of idiocy there was no valid, or any other reason. The gun is now locked up and I am working on educating myself and restoring common sense. At the time this happened I was inserting and removing the 8 rd magazine in the 9 mm S&W Shield which doesn’t seem to want to seat properly, very touchy. So I was going through that over and over and…. I have no excuse. Lesson learned and I present it here for a warning, don’t be an idiot.

      2. NRP,

        I “test the safety” on all weapons whose design is intended to be carried cocked and locked, but not when loaded. If a weapon is going to be carried with a round in the chamber, depending on an engaged “safety” to keep the firing pin from striking the primer, you better know for darn sure it will do its job. Of course you do the testing in a safe location, unloaded, with the muzzle pointed in a safe direction.

        I, too, once had a Remington 700, as has been mentioned, its safety can be overridden with enough pressure on the trigger. I haven’t measured it with gauges (my trigger pull gauge doesn’t go that high), but I’m guessing around 35-40lbs. Not a big worry, but nice to know. I have not seen this failing with other rifles. The Remington 700 failing is because of a design flaw that has since been corrected

        Testing safeties is a prudent part of responsible gun ownership. They can fail for many reasons, just like any other mechanical part. Check it before you carry it. It should be no more dangerous an act than dry firing for practice. The operative word is “dry”, meaning no cartridges and no alcohol.

        1. @ Dennis and all

          You bring up a very valid point for discussion, “test the safety”, I agree 10,000%.

          In addition one had best know how to do a full inspection of the workings of your firearm, for instance, can you recognize a worn firing pin? How about notice of the trigger assembly is starting to ware? Or the slide is wearing after 20,000 rounds? How about a cracked Cylinder on a revolver?

          I clean and do a ‘minor’ check each time I hit the range, I do a mental reminder to do a full breakdown after 2-3000 rounds. And I do mean a full breakdown, even to the point of disassembling the trigger system and doing a crack-fatigue check. A worn firing pin can be disasters if it breaks and happens to lodge in the ‘fire’ position and the slide slams another round into the chamber, I have never seen this happen, but it’s the “what-if” game. So yes, do a test of the safety, but follow through with a good cleaning, inspection and oiling.

          FYI, I always carry, and store all firearms fully loaded and ‘one-in-the-pipe’, and unloaded firearm is just an expensive hammer.


      3. Absolutely not an excuse, but I’ve had to review my state of mind at the time and it was after having immediately in the last several days come off the road from a very grueling 1200 mile road trip over the east coast turnpikes with maneuvering amongst 80 mph traffic within yards of each other. My risk tolerance was allowing for a lot and perhaps that played a role? Was I lax? I think so. Nonetheless I disregarded what I had already known to be safe gun practice and I am truly embarrassed and ashamed.

        1. @ Bean

          No need to be “I am truly embarrassed and ashamed.” Heck you bring up a very valid discussion point, and maybe just maybe someone will read and learn from this…. Thanks


  13. The first thing you do is open the chamber and see if it is loaded as soon as you pick up the gun, even if you see someone else do it you still do it yourself. That’s what I was taught and that is what my kids and grandkids were taught. Even after you check it you still treat it as if it were loaded. You never point a gun at anything you do not want to kill. You know your target and what’s beyond it. You never horse play when a gun is out. I carry a Taurus PT145. It has all the original parts. I do not know what the pull weight on the trigger is, but it has a long pull. I like this on a carry gun. It takes a more deliberate move to fire making it less likely to have an “accident” when I might be in a very high stress situation.

  14. My neighbor had some friends over last Sat. One of the guys, in his very early 20’s probably, was wearing a pistol. Fine, lots of people do that, no big deal. But when he unhostered it, started looking at it, not paying the least bit of attention to where it was pointed, looked down the barrel, THEN took the magazine out, I thought I was going to need to hit the deck to keep from getting shot. There wasn’t a round in the chamber, thank God, but that guy was just flat dangerous. No way I’ll be back over there if they are around. eems there was another episode that day where the guy drew his gun out and my DH caught it out of the corner of his eye and went for his gun, to realize the guy wasn’t a threat, just an idiot. But wow, just wow. Some scary people out there.

  15. I use to be a gun salesman at a sportsman warehouse/wholesale sports for 6 years.Some of the things people did would scare you so bad,you would want to hide in a closet,curle in a ball,and wimper.I’ve shown people a hand gun,and they would look down the barrel,point it around at everything,including others,and then ask me how it worked,or if they could hurt someone with it.Needless to say,I would promptly take it back and refused to let them handle anything else.Some would get pissed,but I didn’t care.I showed one guy a scoped rifle,and then realized he was zeroing in at people across the store.So much for his looking,and I let him know.Whenever showing a firearm,I would take it down pointed in a safe direction,check the action,take out the mag. if it had one,check the action again then put the empty mag. back in,then hand it to the customer.You have no idea how many times I found myself looking down a barrel while I worked there.Nerve wracking.Then,one day I realized I was getting use to it.Time to quit and get ahold of my self.That was 4 years ago,and I think I’m almost back to normal.Ignorance and lack of proper training is definitely a big factor in unwanted discharge.Had a friend holding his rifle with one hand and swinging it by his side while we walked down an old road.Thank god it was pointed at the ground when it went off.It startled me a little,and when I looked at him,his eyes were big as saucers.Neither of us said a word.It was well understood.So,any gun is a loaded gun until it is double checked,and then,still pointed in a safe direction.

  16. Negligent discharges happen because you violated at least one safety rule. Tragedy happens when you violate more than one safety rule. That the bottom line!!!!

  17. #1 Keep your booger finger off the trigger stupid.
    #2 Don’t carry a Glock with a round in the tube.
    #3 If you want a hammer auto get one with a DC.
    #4 Leave the 1911 at home.

    1. Your #2 rule is mute if you follow Rule #1. But if you personally can’t handle a firearm with a chambered round maybe you shouldn’t carry one in the first place!!! There’re just some stupid people regardless of the 2nd Amendment that just shouldn’t have a firearm.

  18. @ Skibum

    I’m close to sea level and have never canned at elevations above 100 feet but, advice aside, I can only tell you what I would do.

    Because you are using non acidic vegetables (carrots and beets), you are correct, it needs to be pressure canned. I’m not sure what your elevation is but based on your previous comment I take it you are above 1,000 feet yet below 8,000. 35 minutes at 15 pounds should be fine. If you are concerned then go to 40 minutes or even 45. I don’t think 5-10 minutes will make a big difference with juice. If it were me, I’d add a couple tablespoons of lemon juice and do a half batch to test the flavor. Just saying.

  19. 99% of accidental discharges can be prevented by just keeping your finger out of that there trigger guard until your ready to shoot. Period!!! Trekker Out

  20. All mechanical devices at some point in time will “fail” to operate correctly.

    Negligence occurs when a firearm is not pointed into a safe back stop AND your finger is on the trigger, or, in the case of a very few firearms, an outside force connects with the trigger.

    While I admit to not being an internet firearms expert, nor an “operator” (not sure most are anyway), I have served for a few years as an armorer for my (then) active duty military unit. Not once in two years of my limited experience did a single semi or automatic firearm EVER self-detonate, nor did they self load.

    Had a Lieutenant as a police officer that was so afraid his duty pistol “would go off by accident”, he placed it in between several large books (most on firearms BTW) to keep from being “killed or injured”.

    I stayed as far away from him when he was carrying, as I possibly could.

    When we play with loaded guns, they WILL go “BOOM!”, best not to play with guns in the first place.

  21. My homework: podcast episode from 4/29/2016: “Gun Safety Rules to Live By!” from “The Safety Solutions Academy Podcast”

  22. What do you call a carry handgun with an empty chamber?
    A dead mans gun!

    Leave the 1911 at home? Really?

    Leave the best defensive handgun ever designed at home?
    Surely you jest!

  23. Product Alert for my fellow safe shooters out there:

    While I was typing on this site yesterday, my gun cabinet with the electronic keypad had a major malfunction that locked me out and did not work with the back up key either. The brand was Stack-On. I had this safe for about 5 years of trouble free service until yesterday. 9 volt battery gets replaced 2x/year at time change. (so battery was less than 6 months old. )

    The young man that came to drill out the lock said he has been getting a lot of calls lately to drill out the locks of inexpensive security cabinets just like mine. ( I was his second customer of the week.) After cleaning out contents and loading in the back of my truck and making a dump run, I stopped by the Sportsmans Warehouse and bought myself another Stack On cabinet with standard lock using keys.

    I noticed that Stack On Cabinets in the store are all mechanical lock now days and they are no longer using electronic locks anymore. The sales clerks confirmed this saying they were having too many unhappy customers coming back for a refund because the lock failed.

    I still have Stack On cabinets with conventional key locks and am very happy with them as some of these cabinets are over 20 years old. 5 years ago, the industry went the direction of electronic locks. Now days, the industry is going back to conventional locks for good reason: Reliability and durability.

    The cost of a lock service coming to drill it out ran about $180. If they have to cut, it will cost close to $450. I got off relatively cheap butt I wanted to pass what I’ve learned to others on this site. The primary purpose of these cabinets is to prevent the meth head burglar and small children from getting their hands on my weapons. I understand these cabinets will only slow down a pro.

    The locksmith and the staff at Sportsmans Warehouse both say : If you go with electronic locks, go high end or stick with manual lock using a key. Learn from my mis-adventures.

    1. Calirefugee,

      About two years ago, I decided it was time to spend the big money for a big fire-rated safe to consolidate my more expensive weapons into one safe. I was keeping mine in four stack-on locking cabinets. The store I went to had several of the high end safes, all with electronic keypad entry. I ask a salesperson about any over-ride to get into the safe if the electronics failed. He referred me to a factory representative who happened to be at the store. The factory rep told me that if they failed, the company would send a person out with a special key that went through a hole in the keypad to over-ride the lock. I asked if the consumer could buy the key for his safe to have on hand, just as back-up. He responded that one key fit all the safes manufactured and only the manufacturer has the keys.

      This knowledge caused me to change my mind about going that route, and I decided to stay with the stack-on cabinets. There is no doubt in my mind that the “special universal key” for those cabinets has, or will be, copied and sold to ne’r-do-wells eventually.

      1. Sentry safe makes a safe with a key override. I bought a large one that also has a fire rating.

    2. @ Calirefugee,

      Regarding ‘keypad’ safes, for me there has been way too much controversy and differing opinions on the electronic keypads of a safe working if ‘IF’ an EMP or CMP hits or as what happened with you, so I just go with the good twist and turn stuff. I prefer the Liberty Safes, probably because that’s what I get a GOOD discount on, helps to know the right people at times… HAHAHA


  24. To Dennis and NRP:

    Sadly enough, 5 years ago, it was difficult to find a safe/ cabinet maker that sold anything but electronic locks. I, for one, am glad to see the direction going away from electronic locks these days.

    There my be some people just getting into home security 5 years ago when the non-electronic options were limited at best. This warning was for those people who may have an “old” electronic safe lock out there. Should you trust it? Should you trust it as it approaches 5 years old? Maybe time for a simpler replacement.

  25. I have a Cannon safe with electronic lock.
    I am concerned about opening the safe if the lock fails, for whatever reason.
    Called the company– they only offer electronic locks now.
    I will have to contract with a locksmith to replace the electronic with a dial lock.
    The good news is that it will not effect the lifetime warranty on the safe. (big deal)

    Do your research when buying a safe.

  26. I had the same issue with Cannon….had about a year’s worth of run-around about the possibility of a new dual lock (both electronic & combo), then finally gave up & called the local safe mover/locksmith. He came out within a couple of days and swapped the electronic lock for a standard dial combination lock in about 15 minutes. Kinda pricey, but worth it for peace of mind.

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