Each year, a staggering 500 people die from unintentional firearm injuries, and Americans are four times more likely to die from an unintentional gun injury than in any other high-income country. Studies show that 37% of nonfatal firearm injuries are unintentional, 2% of gun deaths are unintentional, and according to one analysis, 23% of unintended gun deaths are reported as accidents.
Fortunately, unintended shootings are preventable. Over 4.6 million children live in homes with at least one gun, and in 2021, there were at least 377 unintentional shootings by children, leading to 154 deaths and 242 injuries. Reports state that teenagers are most at risk for unintentional gun death, and more than 80% of teens who commit suicide use a firearm that belongs to a member of their household. However, according to the Society for Public Health Education, these “injuries are not accidents” and can therefore be prevented.
Having gun insurance can help to make guns safer, as many insurance companies reward good firearm safety with lower premiums to encourage responsible ownership. Small practices such as using a gun safe, installing a trigger lock, takin gun safety courses, and using a loaded chamber indicator are all ways that people can help prevent shootings and suicides. Many gun owners may already be covered, as many standard homeowners insurance policies include some coverage for firearms, taking care of things like theft/ loss and liability. This is the bare minimum, and many people are encouraged to take firearm insurance a step further and extend their coverage to ensure the safety and security of their families, friends, and community.