Air Gun Safety: When Things go Wrong
Air guns are generally considered to be lightweight firearms that can freely be used. However, the fact is that air guns are still dangerous if they are not handled properly. There are a number of different things that can go wrong with both the use of air pistols and air rifles, so you should know the most common types of accidents that happen with air guns in order to be more careful when handling your air gun. Furthermore, you should be familiar with the things that you should do when things go wrong.
There are a few major accidents that might happen, if you do not handle your gun correctly and with care. Here is a list of the most common types of air gun accidents.
CO2 pistols must be handled with care, due to the pressure they hold. They can go off when being disassembled and can even blow up even in extreme temperatures. So be sure that if you have a CO2 pistol laying around, it is not loaded when you are disassembling it, nor that it is put under extreme conditions.
Air Gun Accidents with Springs
The most common type of air gun accidents is connected with springs. If you are disassembling an air gun, make sure not only that it is not loaded or cocked, but also that you carefully handle the springs. Furthermore, if you are about to disassemble an air gun, make sure that you use a mainspring compressor, as the spring is hard to deal with. Also, make sure to never underestimate the power of airguns, as they can easily penetrate your skin and body, no matter how much their pressure is considered to be.
Always Keep your Air Gun Unloaded
Playing around with your air gun, you should definitely be sure that it is unloaded. Furthermore, if you are about to leave your air gun out of sight with other people around, even if for a few seconds, make sure that it is not loaded first, as you never know who might make a mistake and fire it by accident.
Never Look Through the Barrel
No matter if you are using a pellet gun or an air gun, even if you are sure that it is not loaded, never point the gun to your eye and look through the barrel. The fact is that no matter how certain you are, there always may be a stuck ammo or the spring of the gun could malfunction and you may experience painful reciprocations.
Look Where you are Firing At
If you are about to fire your air gun, make sure you do so in a safe direction. Always be sure to put your targets at a safe distance from people and objects you do not want to harm. Handle your air gun with care. Furthermore, when cocking an air gun, make sure you do it the proper way and do not involve other limbs of your body other than your arms. Furthermore, don’t try to use other objects, such as tables, to help you out with cocking your air gun, because you might hurt yourself.
What to do When things Go Wrong?
Depending on your situation and the air gun accident scenario you have found yourself in, there are different things that you should do. Here is a list of certain scenarios that might happen to you and what to do in such situations.
Misfire and Scratch/Hit Someone
If you misfire and hit someone, but they only have a bruise, without pallet or projectile penetration, you should be thankful that nothing major went wrong. Except apologizing to the person and doing everything you can to fix the situation socially and being further careful about your air gun shooting in the future, this situation is probably the best you can find yourself in, when things go wrong.
Misfire and Hit Someone with Projectile Penetration
If the projectile actually penetrates the skin of the person you misfired at, the first thing you should do is seek medical assistance. Even if the wound is small, the pellet or projectile should immediately be removed and the wound should be treated by a medical professional, as to not get infected or worsen in any other way.
Misfire and Hit Someone with Projectile Penetration Outside of City Limits
If medical help can’t arrive soon, for example if you are hunting with friends, make sure that you and the person who has been penetrated with the air gun projectile deal with the situation as fast as possible. This includes removing the projectile with sterile instruments, as well as the treatment and disinfection of the wound. However, make sure to immediately head to a place where the person can get medical attention as fast as possible.
If your Air Gun Jams
Don’t try to be an air gun expert. If your air gun jams in any way, make sure to contact an air gun expert that is able to help you out. Dealing with a jam yourself can result in multiple scenarios where you or other people might get hurt, especially if you don’t understand all of the inner workings of your air gun. Furthermore, even if you do, you might still end up doing something wrong, as aforementioned, spring-type accidents are pretty common and generally occur in the disassembly of air guns.
As a whole, you should always treat your air gun as a weapon. Even if its muzzle energy is extremely low and even if your air gun is airsoft, you never know how things might go wrong. With that in mind make sure that you are aware of the different types of accidents that might occur and be prepared to deal with them. Above all, make sure that you are extremely careful when shooting your air gun and also don’t ever leave it loaded.