The Bridge: As we move into summer, make sure guns are secured in the house

Published: May. 17, 2023 at 4:32 PM CDT
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AMARILLO, Texas (KFDA) - As we move into summer, children may have more unsupervised time, leading them to be curious.

The Bridge Children’s Advocacy Center wants to make sure parents have their weapons secure in the home.

According to End Family Fire, 4.6 million children live in homes with access to an unsupervised gun.

“If your child can find Christmas presents that you’re trying to hide in the house, they will find your firearm hidden in the house,” said Tim Williams. former law enforcement and board member.

Williams says there are many ways to secure a weapon.

“A trigger lock, a cable lock, a gun box or safe, but they should not be out laying in the open for children to have access to,” said Williams.

The Bridge says even if you think the safety is on or you think it’s unloaded it should still be put up.

“Children have hand strength with their thumbs that maybe we don’t anticipate, so even the littlest of kids may be able to discharge a weapon.” said Shelly Bohannon, executive director, The Bridge Children’s Advocacy Center.

Bohannon says the center has seen children come in who have gained access to a weapon and discharged it

“Have caused injury to themselves, we’ve had some where an older sibling was shot and killed, so it’s not always the older kids that you have to be mindful of or the younger ones, so it’s all children and that we need to be aware of,” said Bohannon.

Another scenario to be mindful of is suicide.

“75 percent of them are done with a firearm that they had access to in the house and I’ve had to work those as law enforcement, I’ve seen young children, teenagers commit suicide because parents had left a weapon, loaded in the house, unsecured, we shouldn’t have to deal with that, it’s an easy fix, just lock it up,” said Williams.

Also if your children are going to other families homes, Williams says you should ask the parents if they own a gun.

“Are they locked up? It’s your child, you have a right to protect them,” said Williams.

To learn more about how to properly secure weapons in your home, click here.

Each month we have exclusive segments with the bridge, regarding child safety, next month is fire and fireworks safety.