Safe Storage—More Than a Steel Box and Combination Lock
Storing firearms, whether loaded or unloaded, so that they are inaccessible to children and other unauthorized individuals is easy to do given the many options on the market today. Now, when you hear the word “storage,” most people are thinking a safe of some sort, and that is certainly an appropriate way to store firearms. But have you considered how you safely store your firearm when carrying concealed?
For those who choose to carry concealed, their loaded firearms should always be carried in a holster designed to protect the trigger. This prevents the trigger from getting accidentally caught on something—your finger, your clothing, the corner of a counter, someone else’s hands, etc.— and causing an unintentional discharge. Using a holster is especially important for those who keep a firearm in a pocket or purse, where things like ink pens, lip balm tubes and, again, fingers, can all too easily get caught against the trigger and accidentally pull it.
There are many designs for “off-person” or “off-body” carry that have a built-in holster so a handgun is able to be carried safely without riding on a pants belt. Dave Dolbee covers some of these in his essay on holster selection.
When selecting an off-body holster, keep in mind that “off your body” does not mean “out of mind.” We’ve all seen the headlines of someone attempting to pass through an airport or other TSA checkpoint with an undeclared handgun, not because they had any intent of causing harm, but because they forgot the firearm was in their bag. Don’t be one of those people.
It is imperative that you practice safety and are mindful of where your firearm is at all times with whatever holster and carry method you use. When time is of the essence, you need to know not where your firearm is and how to draw it out of the holster and into a position to shoot safely and even quickly. The only way to do that is though repetition. When your nerves are heightened and the heart is thumping, you want experience and muscle memory to help guide you through the situation.