Saskatchewan Hunter Safety Course



The safety blocks the firing mechanism of a firearm to prevent it from being fired accidentally.

For the following reasons, firearm safeties should never be totally relied on:
1. They are subject to mechanical failure and can fail when least expected.
2. They can unknowingly be bumped or jammed off the safe position.

Firearm safeties make proper gun handling safer, but the only sure safety is a firearm with the action open.

(One exception to this rule is the Gevarm. 22 calibre rifle. This French-made semi-automatic rifle is ready to fire when the action is open.)

While featured in various styles according to the manufacturer, below you will find examples of the most common types of safeties.

1. Wing Safety

The wing safety, also referred to as the three-position safety, is only found on bolt-action rifles. It is located at the rear of the bolt on the cocking piece of the bolt-action. It is usually the safest mechanical safety because it blocks the firing pin.

2. Lever Safety

The lever safety is located behind the trigger. It prevents the firearm from being fired before the action is completely closed and locked. This type of safety blocks the trigger only. (Refer to Hammer at Half Cock).


3. Hammer at Half Cock

This safety locks the trigger until the hammer is placed on full cock. It is the true safety of most lever-action firearms.




Step 1. Closed

Step 2. Half Cock

Step 3. Full Cock

IMPORTANT! Trigger must be pulled to move the hammer from FULL to HALF-COCK position. Make sure that you have full control of the hammer and that it does not slip from your grasp.