The headline in the Chattanooga Times Free Press reads: "Teenage boy accidentally shoots, kills friend." We hear about such things all the time. Sometimes it's a kid who does the shooting, sometimes a teen, sometimes an adult. I would like this thread to serve as a place for newbies and people who may be rusty on their gun-safety knowedge and practices to come and learn. Learn for yourself. Learn it for your kids and grandkids, so you can show them the right way. Learn it so that you can share these rules & tips with others who may be around your guns, at home or at the range. Learn so that you can help keep any range safe during the time you're visiting there. If you see an unsafe practice, take it upon yourself to say something about it, so that you become a de-facto Range Safety Officer. (politely, of course. Stupid people resent being yelled at or called stupid and it will tend to discredit anything you say. And some people aren't really stupid, just blissfully ignorant of gun-safety protocol). COOPER'S FOUR RULES OF GUN SAFETY (these are all over the web, including both text and videos, if you want to search). 1-- All guns are to be considered "loaded" at all times, even if you're sure they're not. (This means treat every gun you encounter as if it were loaded, even if it's your gun and you didn't load it, or even if you were sure you unloaded it a few minutes ago...) 2-- Never let the muzzle point at anything you are not willing to shoot right then. (This is about the concept of "muzzle discipline" and avoiding "painting" somebody's body with an imaginary laser beam or light that you might pretend is coming out of the barrel at all times. When handling a gun at the range, gun show, or gun store, or anywhere else, keep the muzzle pointed straight up at the sky, straight down at the ground, but never let it "sweep" the room by pointing it sideways). 3-- Keep your finger off the trigger until your sights are on the target and you've decided to shoot. (People not familiar with this Rule tend to put their finger on the trigger of the gun as soon as they pick it up, and during any handling of the gun. Watch out for this among people you take shooting, or people on the firing line with you! Until the moment of actual shooting comes, and until the barrel is already lined-up with the target, keep your finger outside of the trigger guard.) 4-- Know your Target, and what is Beyond it. (This Rule has two meanings. One is don't mistake a friend or family member for an intruder in your garage at night. Don't mistake another hunter for a deer. But another meaning of this rule applies to target practice at the range: Make sure your target will catch the bullet safely or the bullet will otherwise end up in a safe resting place like the backstop behind the target. Don't let the bullet just bounce off the ground and ricochet in the air where it might land with plenty of killing power left a mile or two away.) Anybody else have any gun safety tips, or links to helpful videos or websites? If you think this thread or one like it should be a "sticky" that stays at the top of the forum page permanently, please say so in the poll.