Should My Handgun Have External Safeties?

Photo Credit: Smith & Wesson

In a previous post, I had stated that “I’m against the use of external safeties”. In this post, I’ll be explaining my position further and give you some points to consider.

My reason for being against the use of external, manual safeties is that I don’t want to add additional steps when it’s a matter of life or death and every second counts. The only external safety that I’m comfortable in having on my handgun is the one on my trigger. If you’re worried about accidently pulling the trigger, remember to follow rule #3: always keep your finger off the trigger and outside the trigger guard until you’ve made the decision to shoot. Revolvers don’t have external, manual safeties and folks have been fine with those.

Again, regardless of what you decide to do – external, manual safeties or no external safeties – it still boils down to proper training on a continual basis. One training tip that I can share is as you draw your pistol out of the holster, use your thumb that’s closest to your safety to disengage it as you bring the firearm into position (some firearms like the M&P Shield EZ and 1911s typically have grip safeties as well so the pistol will not fire unless you have a good firm grip while you pull the trigger). Remember, regardless of what firearm that you’re using, to incorporate snap caps (aka dummy rounds) instead of live ammunition while you train in order to mitigate negligent discharges. As you grow in your knowledge of proper firearms handling, you’ll hopefully move more towards utilizing external safeties less while you carry.

Below are a few videos that touch on this topic more so I would like to encourage you to watch them and leave your thoughts below.

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