The Cornered Cat
Lessons from the headlines #6: How _not_ to check out your new holster

Over the years, several people have wondered why I recommend never putting a loaded gun into your new holster right away.

“Wait, what? Did she just say not to use my new holster immediately??”

Why, yes. Yes I did. Never use  your new holster until you have given it a very complete checking-over. Follow this process for checking out a new holster.

Some people say a process like that is finicky, fussy, maybe even a bit paranoid. Definitely unnecessary. However, I suspect that this guy— and his wife — wish he hadn’t been in such a hurry to slam that gun into his new holster.

From the article at the link:

Two people were shot when a man holstering his pistol outside a Chehalis retailer apparently caused it to accidentally discharge today….

The preliminary investigation indicates a gentleman had just purchased a new holster and was putting his gun inside it, Chehalis Police Department Deputy Chief Randy Kaut said.

‘It accidentally discharged and went through his other hand and his wife’s leg,’ Kaut said.

So, let’s review today’s lessons from the headlines:

  • Always follow the Four Rules of firearms safety (even when you have a new holster).
  • Never point your gun at your own hand, or at someone you love, even when you have a new holster.
  • Never put a loaded gun into an unfamiliar holster. Always check it out first.

2 Responses to Lessons from the headlines #6: How _not_ to check out your new holster

  1. loveslattes says:

    I’m a new shooter. I’ve only been carrying for about 6 weeks. I usually use a Betty IWB appendix. A couple of day ago I was having my hair restored to its natural color (ha!) and was in the chair for a couple of hours. When I stood up, my gun slipped out of the holster and started falling out of my shirt. I was able to grab it and deal with it but it definitely gave me concerns about the holster which seems to have loosened up a bit.

    I will remember your advice given here. I haven’t reached the level of comfort to carry a chambered round yet, and I was glad of that when I had my little snafu the other day.

    • Kathy Jackson says:

      Hi loveslattes,

      Thanks for the comment. I do have to be honest, it gave me the willies! A gun slipping out a holster is a very serious problem.

      With that in mind, although I like to see people carrying the gun loaded and ready to go, you’re right on this one: until you have your carry method really worked out, it’s good that you didn’t have a round in that chamber. (Did I mention having the willies…? I’m glad you’re okay!)

      As soon as I saw your comment, I dropped an email to the woman who designed the Betty, and maybe she’ll come comment here. Until she does, I would stop using that holster because you sure don’t want to be carrying in something that does not hold your gun securely enough.

      Maybe I’m picturing what happened inaccurately, but it sounds like you may have grabbed for the gun while it was falling or slipping. You should know that’s a very, very dangerous thing to do. Modern guns will not fire when they hit the ground, but almost every gun will fire if you press the trigger. When you grab for a gun, there’s a high chance your fingers will hit the trigger, and that could get very loud and messy. This is true whether it’s falling off a table or just sliding down inside your clothes — dangerous either way.

      What kind of gun do you carry?

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