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FIREARM SAFETY FOR CHILDREN. Information and Prevention. April 2009. Training Objectives. Recognize the importance of firearm safety. Identify ways parents and adults can keep children safe from firearms.

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firearm safety for children

FIREARM SAFETY FOR CHILDREN

Information and Prevention

April 2009

training objectives
Training Objectives
  • Recognize the importance of firearm safety.
  • Identify ways parents and adults can keep children safe from firearms.
  • Identify what a child can do if they see a gun, and be able to teach these steps to a child.
firearm use
Firearm Use
  • Mishandling or playing with guns can lead to tragedy. With appropriate care, maintenance and securing of firearms, deaths due to accidental firearm injuries should never occur.
statistics
Statistics
  • In the United States, about 500 children die each year from unintentional shootings. Almost five times as many are wounded.
  • Boys are far more likely to be victims of unintentional firearm deaths than girls.
  • In the United States, 70% of the unintentional firearm shootings involved handguns.
slide5
Most unintentional childhood shooting deaths involve guns kept in the home that have been left loaded and accessible to children.
  • Unintentional shootings among children most often occur when children are unsupervised and out of school.
  • Children as young as 3-years old are strong enough to pull the trigger of many handguns available in the United States.
slide6
Nearly two-thirds of parents with school-age children, who have guns in their home, believe that the firearm is safe from their children. One study found that when a gun was in the home, 75-80% of first and second graders knew where the gun was kept.
missouri child firearm deaths
Missouri Child Firearm Deaths
  • In 2007, six Missouri children died as a result of unintentional firearm injuries.
  • Of the six unintentional firearm deaths reviewed by Child Fatality Review Program Panels in 2007, three involved a gun that was owned by a family member.
  • Three of the Missouri children who died as a result of unintentional firearm injury in 2007, were killed with a gun that was accessible to children or not locked or securely stored.
slide8
In 2007, five of the six child victims of unintentional shootings were male and one was female.
  • In 2007, four of the six unintentional firearm deaths among children involved handguns. One involved a rifle and the other was unknown as to type.
slide9
A 7-year-old girl and her 9-year-old brother were alone in the house. The brother discovered a handgun and began playing with it. The gun went off, striking the 7-year old. She died of her injuries.
  • A 16-year old was watching television and playing video games with two friends. There were no adults present. A 14-year old was playing with a hand gun, “dry firing”, when it went off, striking the 16-year old in the head.
slide10
A 14-year-old boy was target shooting with his step-father. While the step-father went to check on the targets, he heard a shot go off. The child told him he had dropped the gun and it had gone off. He was shot in the chest and died on the way to the hospital.
what can parents do to keep their kids safe
What Can Parents Do to Keep their Kids Safe?
  • Parents who own guns should always store firearms unloaded and locked up. Ammunition should be locked in a separate location, out of the children’s reach. Gun locks, load indicators and other safety devices should be used on all firearms.
keep children safe
Keep Children Safe
  • Parents should teach their children the difference between a toy gun and real gun.
  • When children see someone on television being killed, they need to be taught the difference between a television death and a “real life” death.

(National Rifle Association)

  • Safety lessons that explain the rules for gun safety should be done openly with time for the child to ask questions.
slide13
If your child is 11-years old or older, and expresses an interest in hunting, enroll them in a Hunter Education Safety Course. Missouri mandates Hunter Education Programs for anyone born on or after January 1, 1967. Hunter Education Programs teach participants how to handle firearms safely at home and while hunting. For more information, access the Missouri Department of Conservation’s website at: http://mdc.mo.gov/hunt/heclass-search.html
ten commandments of gun safety
Ten Commandments of Gun Safety
  • Always keep the muzzle pointed in a safe direction.
  • Guns should be unloaded when not actually in use.
  • Don't rely on the gun's "safety". Treat every gun as if it can fire at any time.
  • Be sure of the target and what's beyond it.
  • Use correct ammunition.
slide15
If the gun fails to fire when the trigger is pulled, HANDLE WITH CARE.
  • Always wear eye and ear protection when shooting.
  • Be sure the barrel is clear of obstructions before shooting.
  • Don't alter or modify the gun. Do have the gun serviced regularly.
slide16
Learn the mechanical and handling characteristics of the firearm used. Do not use any firearm that you have not had adult instruction in handling.

(Missouri Department of Conservation)

if children see a gun
If Children See A Gun…
  • Stop!
  • Don’t touch the gun.
  • Leave the area where the gun is located.
  • Go tell an adult about the gun.

(National Rifle Association, Eddie Eagle Program)

for more information
For More Information
  • National Rifle Association, Gun Safety Rules: http://www.nrahq.org/education/guide.asp
  • National Rifle Association, Eddie Eagle Gun Safety Program: http://www.nrahq.org/safety/eddie/index.asp
  • Kid’s Health, Gun Safety: http://kidshealth.org/kid/watch/house/gun_safety.html
  • Project Child Safe: http://www.projectchildsafe.org/
missouri department of social services state technical assistance team
Missouri Department of Social Services State Technical Assistance Team

Address:

PO Box 208Jefferson City, MO 65102-0208

Telephone: (573) 751-5980(800) 487-1626(8 a.m. to 5 p.m. CST, Monday – Friday)

Email:

[email protected]

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