Special Report: Guns Safe and Secure - WOWK 13 Charleston, Huntington WV News, Weather, Sports

Special Report: Guns Safe and Secure

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It's likely that if you don't own a handgun, the person in the home or vehicle next to you does.

Most local gun dealers say pistol sales are at an all time high, and the number of women buying guns for the first time grows every year.

At a sporting goods store, checking out new hunting equipment, Jeremy Lawhorn said his two girls Kaylee 8, and Breanna 9, learned early on to respect firearms. And the girls gave us some good advice.

"Treat every gun like it's a loaded gun," Breanna told us.

 "Never point a gun at anyone because you don't know if it might go off," Kaylee added.

Veteran gun safety instructor Chuck Yeager said you will know by your child's intellect and attitude when to have that "gun talk."

"When you think the child is mature enough, you should introduce them to your guns. With the first thing being firearm safety," Yeager told us.

We found first time gun owning women were packing the two concealed carry and pistol safety classes we attended.

 "I've never really felt threatened but there are a lot of drugs in my neighborhood.It's good to have my gun, just to have it as a safety outlet,"From new gun owner Mary Hoskins.

"If I'm at WalMart at 10 p.m. with my two year old, and somebody comes up to me, I'll be armed and ready,"Nakkiah McGraw talked about why she got a pistol.

Concealed carry weapon instructors and police said the best way to secure and store your weapon at home is in a combination lock box.

 "In a fast motor compromised situation the adrenaline is pumping and the lock box is the easiest and safest to get into," Instructor Rebecca Scott told 13 News.

Why should you take your gun out of the house? Scott said if you come home to an empty house and the robber is still there, you have protection.

In your vehicle, CCW experts say don't keep you gun in obvious glove boxes or stuffed way under the seat.They suggest keeping it in a side pocket.

Scott said you can get a built-in holster, and keep it on the driver's side next to you rather than in the other front seat, where you may have a young passenger

Scott estimated that nearly 3/4 of the vehicles in your neighborhood parking lot have handguns concealed inside.

But to really understand the new gun you have for home and personal protection, you have to get out of the home, and get trained in shooting that gun.

"If you have to use deadly force, you'll be under great stress, so you have to be extremely proficient with that firearm,"Cabell County Sheriff Tom McComas said. 

Handgun experts say without understanding and practicing family firearm safety, a gun owner's safe and secure home, is just a house with a loaded gun inside.     

Now that you own a gun, or are considering getting a firearm, we've posted a" home invasion drill" video this page. The drill highlights the essential steps you and your family can take to say safe in case of a break-in while you are at home.

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