Because it is all too easy for a person to discharge a firearm accidentally or in the wrong direction it is of paramount importance that everyone taking part in this sport keeps the need to act safely in the forefront of their minds. Safety must become a natural habit. The safety rules must be learnt, and adhered to at all time. Make no apology for talking about safety, even to experienced shooters.
Safety is divided into three areas:
SAFETY AT HOME
- Always keep firearms and ammunition under lock and key.
- Always keep ammunition separate from firearms.
- Keep firearms and ammunition away from children, but train children in safety.
SAFETY AT THE CLUB
- Always prove a firearm whenever it is handed from one person to another.
- Always prove a firearm when taking from its box or cover.
- Always carry firearms open or with the bolt removed.
- Keep firearms and ammunition separate if at all possible.
- Never handle a firearm without asking its owner.
- Never try the trigger without specific permission.
- Never load a magazine or firearm except at the firing point.
- Never point a firearm at anybody: only point it in the direction in which it is meant to be shot.
- Never sight along firearms unless at the firing point and after checking no one is forward.
SAFETY AT THE FIRING POINT
- Never handle firearms while people are forward of the firing point.
- Never load until told to do so by the Range Officer.
- Unload immediately when either a verbal or whistle command (three short blasts) is given. Bench weapon and take one pace back from the bench and await instructions from the Range Officer.
- When a firearm is loaded keep it pointed down the range at the bullet catcher.
- After firing always prove* the firearm, check the magazine is empty, bench the firearm and take one pace back from the bench and wait instructions from the Range Officer.
- Never leave the firing point without the Range Officer’s permission.
Proving a firearm means examining it to ensure that it is unloaded, not only to your satisfaction but also to the satisfaction of the Range Officer and other people. To prove a semi-automatic rifle first remove the magazine, and then open the action, look at the face of the slide to ensure that a round is not held there by a faulty ejector.
A Range Officer can insist that a person guilty of a breach of the safety rules leave the range immediately and can be disqualified from that competition.
Safety is only achieved by never ending vigilance.
PERSONAL SAFETY EQUIPMENT
It is strongly recommended that all shooters make use of:
Ear defenders and/or earplugs.