NOTE: This article was written by my aunt who wants to reiterate the importance of proper gun storage. I definitely agree so I decided to share this with you guys. -Michael
I was enjoying the company of two friends of mine (a married couple) at my favorite restaurant. One of them turned to me and asked, “As a gun owner, how do you keep your kids safe around guns?” The question left me stunned for a few seconds. Our casual conversation suddenly became serious.
My husband and I have four sons. At this time, their ages range from seven to thirteen. They are the typical kids. They are curious and full of energy. We have owned guns for most of their lives.
I have a theory when it comes to keeping the children safe around guns in your home. I believe their safety should come in two solid layers. In this article, I will cover the first solid layer of safety: keeping guns out of the hands of kids.
I learned a very important lesson several years ago. It was imperative for me not to fully trust “child proof” features. My sons learned how to climb out of their cribs without my help. They also learned how to get pass cabinet locks. A cabinet lock may slow down an adult, but it rarely stops a determined child filled with a spirit of adventure.
My sons are regular kids and they will do almost anything that seems intrigues them. This is the primary reason why my husband and I decided that we had to take measures that would prevent them from gaining access to our firearms. I had to find a method that would not depend on locks. This method had to give me a peace of mind as responsible parent with a registered firearm in the home.
Securing Non-Defense Firearms
We took the first step by placing all weapons we wouldn’t use as an emergency first line of defense into our gun safe. An exceptional gun safe is designed to protect guns from grown men with power tools. We knew that our gun safe would keep our kids from getting their hands on our guns. As an added measure of safety, we made sure that every gun in the safe was unloaded. We kept the ammunition in another sturdy safe.
Let’s discuss safes for a quick moment. A top of the line safe can protect firearms from fires and burglars. The price of a top of the line safe depends on its features.
Safes are rated for burglary resistance according to how long it can hold up to entry attempts made by burglars. Some safes are torch and tool resistant on all sides. These types of safes tend to be more expensive. It is imperative for you to remember that a safe is normally compromised when it is picked up and taken away by a burglar. This is why it is important to bolt your safe to the wall or floor.
The price for a fire and burglar resistant full sized safe starts at $900. Without fire protection, be ready to pay at least $500 for a dependable floor safe.
There are other options you can consider if you cannot afford a dedicated safe. Franzen makes bore locks, cable locks, lock boxes, and many other creative devices that can lock your firearms with ease. For example, the “Armloc II” will keep your gun safe. The Armloc II is a sturdy gun case that has a three number programmable combination lock and key lock. It is vital that you hide your keys from your children!
Another option is the “Life Jacket”. The Life Jacket is a leading gun lock that nearly covers the entire gun, or clamps over the action of a long gun. It can be carried around or mounted on the wall. The price of this firearm safety measure starts at twenty dollars.
Before investing in a gun safe, we used a beautiful antique trunk to hide our guns. The trunk was old, but it had an exceptional lock. Our second layer of defense was purchasing locks for each gun. The cable locks made it impossible for our firearms to be loaded and fired.
As a general rule, two layers of defense should always be implemented when you cannot afford a gun safe. This will make it virtually impossible for your children to gain access to your firearms.
Storing a Defense Gun
I felt confident about storing our guns safely, but I had my concerns when it came to having access to a firearm if a thug decides to break into our home. A defense gun is the only logical choice for this scenario. You can buy a quick access safe for a defense gun, but you may not be able to access your gun in time. I decided to keep my loaded gun on my hip. This may seem radical, but I feel that it is the best option. A handgun under the strict control of a responsible adult is a good safety measure.
My husband and I have also been considering getting the best biometric gun safe. If any of you has one, please message me as I’d like to hear about your experience.
Disarming Kids Curiosity
Keeping the children safe around guns in your home is a serious subject. With a reliable defense gun on my hip and firearms in the gun safe, I began to feel confident that my kids were not in harm’s way. I also had to consider the fact that my boys enjoyed spending time with their friends. It would probably be out of line for me ask their friend’s parents if they own a gun. I think it is important for me to teach my boys how to behave responsibly while visiting their friends.