The Short Manual of Firearm Safety

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The Short Manual of Firearm Safety

Post by JamesG » Mon May 24, 2010 3:17 am

The improper handling of firearms, whilst not always applicable to every character, is fairly rife within any thread about fighting, or being armed. Below are some helpful rules I have found to remind people that projectile motion resulting from firing a weapon in the air can and will cause unintentional death, injury or damage, as an example. So, members with armed characters, if you want to RP a little more realistically with firearms, press on!

Handling Firearms

1. All guns are always loaded.
2. Never let the muzzle cover anything you are not willing to destroy.
3. Keep your finger off the trigger until your sights are on the target.
4. Be sure of your target and what is beyond it.

—Colonel Jeff Cooper

Let's analyse these rules!

1. All guns are always loaded.

- Limits accidental firing if loading, firing and emptying occurs in the wrong order
- Limits any ambiguity about whether the safety is on or off
- Limits any accidental discharge if the firearm is faulty

2. Never let the muzzle cover anything you are not willing to destroy.

- Limits the chance of firing into an unintended target
- Pointing the firearm upwards will not cause ricocheting, but the projectile may fall onto an unintended target
- Pointing the firearm downwards prevents any falling projectiles, but may ricochet
- Pointing the weapon at any person or non-target violates this rule unless the handler is 100% willing to destroy the target

3. Keep your finger off the trigger until your sights are on the target.

- Prevents firing if the handler is startled
- Prevents firing if the handler experiences a spasm
- Prevents firing if the handler trips or falls

4. Be sure of your target and what is beyond it.

- Limits chance of hitting unintended target upon missing
- Limits chance of striking a second, unintended target if the intended target is penetrated

Firearms in Storage

Gun safes

Gun safes are used to prevent access to a firearm, or from a firearm being seen lying around when not in use. Ammunition may also be stored separately, and disassembly of the firearm also prevents any accidents. Some nations, such as Sweden, require guns to be stored and locked when not in use, and it is a fair thought to suppose many Feilan countries also support this.


Locks are used to prevent the firearm from being used, even when out of a safe. Trigger locks prevent the trigger from moving. Chamber locks prevent any rounds from being chambered. Cable lock perform a similar function, but also prevent the magazine from being inserted.

Other Dangers

Other Detritus

Most semi-automatic and automatic weapons eject spent cartridges at high speed. These casing are also usually dangerously hot. By-standers may be injured by the impact or burning of these cartridges. Firearms also eject some small amounts of unburnt powder, and gases, which can cause injury.


When a misfire or jam occurs, firearm safety dictates that the handler should exercise extreme caution, as a cartridge whose primer has been struck in a misfire or which has been deformed in a jam can discharge unexpectedly. The handler should wait two minutes with the firearm pointed in a safe direction, then remove the magazine, extract any misfired cartridge, and with the breech open check to ensure there is not a bullet or other obstruction lodged in the barrel. If there is, and a subsequent round is fired, the gun can fail explosively, resulting in serious injury.

Under the Influence

Never operate or handle a firearm whilst under the influence of legal or illicit drugs, alcohol or any other similar substance. This can impair the user's judgement. There should be zero tolerance of any such substance, and it is a crime in several countries to operate a firearm whilst drunk.

Fun Fact

Your friendly administrator James has in the past, inadvertantly had a compound bow with an arrow nocked pointed in his direction. It was not a very fun experience, so remember, this can apply to other forms of weaponry, where applicable. The best thing to remember about your character and gun safety is: Discharging, pointing or handling a firearm for Dramatic Effect is pretty stupid.
"You can't just remain a root forever. Eventually you grow and change into other things, like stems and leaves and such. Are a tree's leaves an insult to its roots?" - Sade

"It is easy for a statesman, whether he be in the Cabinet or the Chamber, to blow a blast with the wind of popularity on the trumpet of war, warming himself the while at his own fireside; or to thunder orations from this tribune and then to leave it to the musketeer who is bleeding to death in the snow whether his system win fame and victory or no. There is nothing easier than that; but woe to the statesman who in these days does not look around him for a reason for war which will hold water when the war is over." - Otto von Bismarck

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Re: The Short Manual of Firearm Safety

Post by Rainwhisker » Mon May 24, 2010 8:14 am

Dramatic Effect, eh?

Must be because of them movies...then again, you COULD say that my characters are stupid in a sense they don't know these rules by heart...XD
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Re: The Short Manual of Firearm Safety

Post by Jackie Haystack » Mon May 24, 2010 8:24 am

Also note... the majority of people do not carry guns around 24/7, or do not have the will to use them. The number of character's who are quite calm about killing off someone shocks me.

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Re: The Short Manual of Firearm Safety

Post by FallenLeaf » Sat Oct 16, 2010 10:58 am

((Incredibly late response!))

Another good rule of thumb with firearms, though not necessarily all that likely to show up in a roleplay, is:

If you don't know how to properly operate this weapon...
Don't touch it.
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Re: The Short Manual of Firearm Safety

Post by RabidFox » Tue Nov 16, 2010 9:46 pm

Very good tutorial, James. I just got around to finishing it.

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Re: The Short Manual of Firearm Safety

Post by RasHeart » Sat Mar 03, 2012 12:44 pm

God, I almost forgot these rules.

I guess laying off going to rifle training can do that.


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