Every time you pick up a firearm, open the action and check to see whether ammunition is present. When another person hands you a firearm, do not accept it unless the firearm is unloaded and the action is open. Treat the firearm as if it were loaded.
Don’t Rely On Your Gun’s “Safety”
The safety serves as a supplement to proper gun handling but common sense is the key to safety. The safety on a gun is just like any piece of equipment, it could malfunction. So remember, just because you think the safety is on and operable, you should still be careful and perform your basic safety steps. Treat every gun as though it was loaded and can fire at any time.
Never place the safety in between positions, since half-safe is unsafe. Keep the safety “on” until you are absolutely ready to fire.
Even if the safety is on, a quick blow or jar (dropping the gun) could actuate the firing mechanism. So, never put your gun in a position where it has the possibility of being dropped on the floor or ground. The only time you can be absolutely certain that a gun cannot fire is when the action is open and it is completely empty. Again, never rely on your gun’s safety to be the primary safety control.
Never touch the trigger on a firearm until you actually intend to shoot. Keep your fingers away from the trigger while loading or unloading. Never pull the trigger on any firearm with the safety on the “safe” position or anywhere in between “safe” and “fire.” It is possible that the gun can fire at any time, or even later when you release the safety, without your ever touching the trigger again. So remember, always handle firearms as if they were loaded.