Firearms Safety

Ten Commandments of Firearms Safety

Deer hunting firearms season, Oct. 18, all hunters should review the ‘Ten Commandments of Firearms Safety’ before heading to the woods this season.

“Ultimately, each hunter is responsible for keeping themselves and others safe while pursuing deer this year,” says Georgia Department of Natural Resources’ Wildlife Resources Division Hunter Safety Coordinator Capt. James Bell. “This includes respecting all firearms and being absolutely certain of their target.”

The ‘Ten Commandments of Firearms Safety’ is an excellent safety checklist, covered in all hunter education courses, and well worth a review by any hunter who utilizes firearms to hunt. The commandments are as follows:

1. Control the direction of the firearm’s muzzle. Keep the safety on and fingers off the trigger at all times until ready to shoot.

2. Identify the target and what is beyond it before shooting. Know the identifying features of the game hunted and be absolutely certain that what you are aiming at is that game.

3. Treat every firearm as if it is loaded.

4. Be sure the barrel and action are clear of obstructions and that only the proper size of ammunition is used in the firearm.

5. Always unload a firearm when it is not in use, leave the actions open, carry empty firearms in a case to and from shooting areas.

6. Never aim a firearm at anything that you do not intend to shoot. Avoid all horseplay with a firearm.

7. Never climb a tree or fence, or jump a ditch or log, with a loaded firearm. Never pull a firearm towards you by the muzzle.

8. Never shoot a bullet at a flat, hard surface or at water. Make sure backstops are adequate during target practice.

9. Store firearms and ammunition separately and beyond the reach of children and careless adults.

10. Avoid all alcoholic beverages and drugs before and during shooting.

For more information on firearms safety, visit or contact the WRD Hunter Education office at (770) 761-3010.