Safe storage of firearms urged in Montana

Posted at 4:35 PM, Jan 24, 2019
and last updated 2019-01-24 18:26:05-05

BOZEMAN – The US Centers for Disease Control and Preventionalong with the National Center for Injury Prevention and Control recently identified the top five states with the highest overall gun death rates — and Montana came in second.

Accidental deaths caused by guns happen across the country and here in the Treasure State every year but ensuring that your firearm is secure has the potential to save a life.

“This isn’t about impacting anyone’s — or infringing on anybody’s — right to possess firearms or bear arms. It is about being a responsible firearm owner and a responsible user of firearms, and making sure we’re not leaving them unsecured in an area where a person can access them that shouldn’t,” said Bozeman Police Chief Steve Crawford.

Montana has a household gun ownership rate of 67.5% while the gun death rate per 1,000 people is 23.23 in the Treasure State. But locking up a firearm is something you can do for free.

“Gunlocks are one small way that can have a huge impact. An unsecure firearm in a home is a risk and here’s something that can be done — just like clicking your seatbelt going down a highway that we can make,” Crawford said.

Free gun locks are available at most local health departments, police and fire stations across Montana.