"You'll find that kids are curious about firearms since it's something mom and dad mess with or see on tv, they don't realize the finality of using a firearm," says Idalou Police Chief, Brian Frieda.
40% of American households with children have guns. This year more than 13,000 kids will be injured or killed by firearms. Frieda says whether or not a gun is loaded, all firearms can be dangerous in the hands of a child. "Some children would have to use both fingers to pull the trigger but yes it can be done," says Frieda.
The nation's largest firearm safety program, Project Childsafe, is distributing millions of gun locks for police departments to hand out to residents with firearms.
Each lock comes with a cable that you slide through the magazine well and lock into place, this prevents the gun from firing. "The cable locks that will work in revolvers as well as the semi-automatic hand guns and they will work in several types of rifles," says Frieda.
But Frieda is quick to point out that the lock should not be a substitute for storing and handling firearms. It's the responsibility of parents to know how to handle firearms safely and store them securely. "That's where parents come into play and exercising the responsibility of owning a firearm and making sure they're not readily available and because accidents happen all too often."
Frieda says if you own a gun you should make sure it is unloaded and locked. "Take a few minutes of your time to stop by ask for the locks when you go home lock them up because in the long run it's going to save somebody a lot of grief," says Frieda.
This small lock may be the only thing standing in the way of a serious or fatal injury to someone you love.
You can get the gun locks from several Lubbock county police departments. Idalou, Shallowater, New Deal, Ransom Canyon, Slaton, Buffalo Springs, and Wolfforth Police Departments are handing out locks during normal business hours free of charge while supplies last.