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February 11, 2013

BETTER SAFE THAN SORRY: Weekend session offers lesson in gun safety

UTICA — “I would rather be safe than sorry.”

That is the phrase Tony Johnson had more than 100 people say twice in unison during a gun safety seminar Saturday at the Clark County Casting and Conservation Club.

Johnson, of Utica, is a long-time member of the organization and emceed the hour-long meeting.

In the midst of the debate over firearm regulations taking place in Washington, D.C. that is saturating national media, Johnson said it seemed appropriate to take a step away from the politics and focus on educating area youth on firearm safety. 

“We had a lot of young people here. They are the people who should start out learning about guns and gun safety,” Johnson said. “It is a big topic right now, and we just want to promote gun-safety awareness.”

Johnson opened the seminar with a PowerPoint presentation on gun-safety basics. The tips provided during the presentation included keeping your finger off the trigger until you are ready to shoot the firearm, always pointing the firearm in a safe direction, and never examining a loaded firearm by looking down its barrel.

While the suggestions may seem obvious to any gun user, Johnson said practicing gun-safety basics can be a matter of life and death.

“It can save your life and it can save your kids’ lives,” Johnson said gun-safety of awareness.

Following the PowerPoint presentation, several guest speakers addressed the audience, a mix of men, women and children.

Ricky Ferree, a manager at Lewis and Clark Gun Range in Utica, was asked by the club to share safety tips and talk about the importance of using gun-safety accessories, including safety glasses and ear protection.

“Safety is a thing that needs to be addressed at all ages, and all people need to know about it that have guns,” Ferree said.

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