Firearms instructors recommend training for new gun owners - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Firearms instructors recommend training for new gun owners

CAPE GIRARDEAU, MO (KFVS) -

The number of first time gun owners is on the rise and safety instructors want people to remember the importance of safety.

"If you're going to buy a handgun, get some training," SEMO Tactical firearms instructor Ron Meredith said. “Just grabbing a gun and sticking it in your belt is not going to help you. There's a lot things that go along with having a handgun."

Meredith teaches a concealed carry courses, a class geared toward handgun safety.

"Even if you're not going to carry one, it's a great class for basics on a handgun," Meredith said.

It can be especially helpful to first time gun owners.

Amber Waves Gun Range owner Tim Jarvis said he's seen a rise in first time handgun buyers.

"We had a definite influx with everything going on today." Jarvis said. "They just want to be prepared in case something does happen."

But even for those with basic training, Meredith urges people to stay smart.

"If you plan on getting involved in a situation and concealed carry is the only class you've had, don't get involved," Meredith said.

He said it takes advanced training to simulate what it's really like to be in a gun fight.

"When you get into a high stress situation, your blood pressure is going to go up and you'll get tunnel vision where you're only going to see certain things," Meredith said.

Bottom line, Meredith said if you have gun you should know how to use it safely.

"If they're going to buy a gun, they definitely need to get the training."

We also talked to the Madison County sheriff, who had a word of warning for gun newbies.

Sheriff Robert Spain also advised everyone to be properly trained if they choose to carry a weapon.

"We have to go through weapons training, we have to qualify every year, and it's important that we do that," Sheriff Spain said. "It's just as important as a CCW carrier that you do that same thing. Know the laws about what you can and can't do. We don't want a citizen to get in trouble because they're not knowledgeable of the laws and what's out there they need to know."

The sheriff also advised that if you see anything suspicious, to always contact your local authorities.

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