The 4 rules to firearm safety -
- Assume that all firearms are always loaded, and treat them as such.
- Never point the gun at anything you are not willing to shoot.
- Keep your finger off the trigger until you’re ready to fire.
- Be sure of your target and what’s behind it.
Some safety “rules” for Black Powder Shooters and some apply to smokeless powder shooters as well.
The Don’ts of muzzle loading:
- Don’t prime the pan of a flint lock or cap a percussion firearm until it is pointed at the
target or down range and you are on the firing line on a hot range. Never prime
or cap in a non-shooting area.
- Don’t smoke while handling black powder. It could be the last time.
- Don’t hurry, on a misfire, to examine the firearm until sufficient time has passed. Up to a
minute to be safe. Keep the muzzle pointed down range during this period of time.
- Don’t pour powder directly from the flask or horn into a just fired barrel. Always use a powder measure.
- Don’t keep OPEN black powder container(s) in the shooting area.
- Don’t talk to a shooter when they are in process of shooting the target.
- Don’t handle equipment of others without specific permission.
- Don’t bend yourbody over the muzzle when ramming a bullet or round ball into a charged barrel.
- Don’t pour powder into a barrel that has been oiled for storage. Clean the barrel first then snap a cap to burn the oil out of the flash hole, then load for shooting.
- Don’t get careless in any process of the muzzle loading procedures.
- Don’t drink alcohol if you intend to shoot and don’t shoot if you have been drinking.
- Don’t take any medications that may inhibit your ability to shoot (certain prescription drugs)
- Don’t shoot if you have taken any medications that may inhibit your ability to shoot (certain prescription medications).