Safety Precautions for having both guns and children in house?

Shotgun Buddha

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Just interested in hearing how most folk go about dealing with this situation, do you lock weapons away or just train the children to respect them? Basically what precautions do you or would you yourself take in situation to ensure safety and prevent accidents?

Im coming from the point of view of someone who lives in a country with neither readily available guns nor a gun culture. So my views when thinking of firearms within society tend mostly to concern safety issues rather than self defence or how availabilty might affect crime.
Here its not that likely in any assault that a firearm will be involved, and quite frankly if criminals wish to procure firearms, they will regardless of the they're legality. What with being criminals and all.
So sfae handling in the possession and use of a firearm tends to be what I'd mainly be interested in as a concern.
 

tellner

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They have to be secured.

No matter how much you trust your kids or how well you think you've raised them they are still children. That means their brains are not fully developed. They have poor impulse control and do not really understand consequences. There are things you can do to train them to be safe around dangerous things like matches, firearms and power tools. But you still need to take precautions.

But suppose you have perfect children. They wouldn't touch a gun without supervision no matter what. They still have friends whom you didn't raise.
 

Lisa

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My children are older now so I don't necessarily lock them away because I am worried about any impulse control from them, I lock them away to avoid any impulse control from their friends and I also don't want them to go missing if we were ever broken into. I think leaving your firearms out is neglectful and asking for trouble. Why would you put your child at such a risk? I want to really smack people upside the head when I hear they do that.

I think education of children in a home with firearms is imperative. Teaching them respect and understanding of what a firearm can do will help them grow up with a healthy understanding. In our household our children compete with our firearms and have done so since the age of 9. Our youngest especially has a love for competition and hopes to someday compete at the Olympics.
 
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Shotgun Buddha

Shotgun Buddha

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Having them secured away makes sense to me alright, and what I'd be inclined towards. How do you balance that with the possible need to retrieve the firearms quickly in case of a threat or intuder? Retrieval drills till you can do it in your sleep?
 

tellner

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Of course, as they show more maturity and responsibility you trust them more. At six months you strap them into the car seat. It six they buckle themselves into the booster seat. At sixteen you say a quick prayer to the Powers that Be and let them drive.

Same sort of thing with guns.
 

Lisa

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Having them secured away makes sense to me alright, and what I'd be inclined towards. How do you balance that with the possible need to retrieve the firearms quickly in case of a threat or intuder? Retrieval drills till you can do it in your sleep?

During the day you should have a concealed carry permit and the firearm should be on you at all times. At night, when your little ones are tucked safely in their beds you have your firearm safely within your reach but still safely out of theirs. Its a matter of thinking your needs through. Retrieval drills are something you practice at the range or at home when no one is around to get in harms way.
 

searcher

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I keep most of my firearms in my gun safe. My wife and I are the only ones with access to the safe(key and password).

My home defense gun is out of reach and out of sight of the kids. I make sure my kids understand that they are not allowed to touch them unless I am present. And I put them through the NRA safety and handling courses. That along with the fact that my kids are not home without myself or my wife makes it secure for us, so far.

My kids understand that guns kill and they see how destructive they can be if misused.
 

teekin

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If it's an auto keep the mag out , the action open and clear as well as locked away. If you want to be extra safe keep a trigger lock on as well.
If it's a wheel gun keep the wheel open and clear, speed loader ready and close by, trigger locked off.
If handguns are in a fireproof gun safe then once safe is opened and ammo is loaded in ( mag or speedloader) your set. A good gun safe is just about impossible to break into and if built into the house tough to find and Impossible to remove.
lori
 

Deaf Smith

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Shotgun Buddha,

First and formost show the guns to the kids. Tell them what they are for and if you can go shoot something like a watermellon in front of them to show what it can do. Then tell them they can shoot with you anytime. Tell them you will stop what you are doing and get the guns and ammo and go plink (.22s are best for that.) BUT, also tell them to please not touch the guns, nor tell others about them.

That way you take the 'forbidden fruit' thoughts away from them.

And then, except for your protection gun, keep the others in a safe. Even one of those stackon safes you can get at Wal-Mart for $100 bucks. Your protection gun should be either be picked up high or in one of those hand safes like the 'Gun Vault'. Trigger locks are the pits. They touch the trigger and if the gun is loaded you are asking for a accdental discharge.

Here is a good bunch of safes. http://www.gunsafes.com/

Since the kids were told what I wrote above (they are grown now), they have never had an accidental gunshot.

Deaf
 

grydth

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Guns and children are a bad mix.... so you all must face the hard facts and do the mature, responsible thing: give the children away.:)
 

Lisa

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BUT, also tell them to please not touch the guns, nor tell others about them.



Since the kids were told what I wrote above (they are grown now), they have never had an accidental gunshot.

Deaf

Deaf, I agree with everything you said, however, I have a hard time believing that kids would listen to the "don't tell anyone" advice. They want their friends to know about the "cool" guns their Dad had and what they could do with them.

We never told our daughters not to tell their friends, but we made it clear that the guns would never be part of show and tell for them and that, unless their parents accompanied them, they would never try our firearms. They never asked us to make an exception to that rule and have asked on rare occasion to bring their friends to the range during a practice. Especially for our youngest one, she feels her team mates are her other family and that part of her life is something she holds dear and doesn't like to share with her school friends.
 

Andy Moynihan

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All that is necessary isd that they be accessible to you but not to unauthorized persons.

There are many options available now with technology the way it is.

There are even safes that won't respond to anything but a magnetic bracelet you wear, there's even a higher end one that responds to your personal EM field at a touch for crying out loud. It CAN be done.

Either my carry guns are on me, or they're in the lockbox to which I keep the only key. My shotgun is in the combintion safe with 2 of the 3 numbers dialed in so as to make it quicker for me to access but NO quicker to anyone who doesn't know all 3.
 

Deaf Smith

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Deaf, I agree with everything you said, however, I have a hard time believing that kids would listen to the "don't tell anyone" advice. They want their friends to know about the "cool" guns their Dad had and what they could do with them.

We never told our daughters not to tell their friends, but we made it clear that the guns would never be part of show and tell for them and that, unless their parents accompanied them, they would never try our firearms. They never asked us to make an exception to that rule and have asked on rare occasion to bring their friends to the range during a practice. Especially for our youngest one, she feels her team mates are her other family and that part of her life is something she holds dear and doesn't like to share with her school friends.

Lisa,

Let the kids know WHY you have the guns. Especially the defensive ones and why, if they tell someone, that the person they told might tell another, and another, and another.... till someone who should not know, a bad person, and that might jepordize the family.

And thus the 'secret' should be just between us so to speak.

Deaf
 

Lisa

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Lisa,

Let the kids know WHY you have the guns. Especially the defensive ones and why, if they tell someone, that the person they told might tell another, and another, and another.... till someone who should not know, a bad person, and that might jepordize the family.

And thus the 'secret' should be just between us so to speak.

Deaf

When I was a teenager I babysat for the same family for years. Their oldest son who at the time was about 8 whispered to me one night when his parents were out "My dad has a gun, wanna see it?" and he showed it to me. I asked him did his dad tell him not to tell anyone and he replied yes. Then I asked why he told me and he said "because I can trust you, you won't tell anyone will you?" Some secrets are just too hard for a young person to keep. Perhaps he never told his friends and only told me cause he had to get the secret out somehow, but my bets are that a few of his "trusted" friends also knew. My view is that secrets are just too big not share. That is why I have never made it a "secret" and have been upfront with my kids, their friends and my friends as well.

But I think we are looking at this from different perspectives. Our guns are technically for competition only, while others may have them solely for defense.
 

jks9199

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Many good answers above.

The bottom line is that you need a multi-faceted approach to gun safety and kids just like you need a multi-faceted approach to home defense.

You need to secure the guns and ammo. You need to put them somewhere accessible to you -- but not others. There are several gun safes on the market that meet these needs reasonably well. And you need to educate your children about firearm safety.
 

Bruno@MT

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The bottom line is that you need a multi-faceted approach to gun safety and kids just like you need a multi-faceted approach to home defense.
.

My other hobby is restoring antique staight razors. I always have a number of projects in various states of completion, and there are several razors in several places of the house.

I ALWAYS make sure that I never leave a blade lying around, and that no blades are within reach of little hands.

But my oldest daughter has always been interested in the things I do to / with blades. At age 2, I taught her (using a dull razor of course) how to pick up a razor, close it if it still had the scales attached, and then carry it safely to a grownup. And I taught her which part of it was sharp and should never be touched. And I showed her what a sharp razor can do.

She knows that she is never to touch my razors, but I feel much better, knowing that she knows what to do IF I were someday to make a horrible mistake and forget to put away one of my blades. Because that knowledge will be the difference between a close call and a tragic accident.

By age 2 she was already using real scissors under our supervision, and at age 3 she was helping us cut beans with a sharp peeling knife under our supervision. Any house has a number of sharp objects. I've always thought it best to remove the mystique and teach them how to use things safely in a controlled environment.

Btw, I will use the same approach to teaching them to drink alcohol in their teens. I'd much prefer if they learn the effects of alcohol in a safe environment, instead of at a party with a bottle of booze from someone's liquor cabinet.
 

Carol

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Personally, I think that if there is a firearm in the house, then everyone in the house should be trained on its safety...adults and children.
 

chinto

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Teach your children well, but if you are not home perhaps securing the weapons is good. but, a weapon that is not functional is useless. so you decide. I grew up in a house where the weapons were not secured, and never had a problem.. but then i was a lot more worried about my parents then i ever was of say the cops! sadly that is not true any more for most children.
( yep I blame the parents, but all so the stupidity of the different government ententes that forbid spanking or sure seem to want to. )

this has ended up in many parents seeming to neglect their responsibility's as parents and then blame the rest of us when their kids are a mess.

so teach your children well..
 
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