Firearm Safety

If you are worried about someone, take precautions before things get to a crisis point.

  • Build time between a person and a gun in a suicidal crisis will keep you safer.
  • Store guns off-site temporarily, or ask someone you trust to hold onto the keys, or store keys somewhere they are not available in a crisis like a bank safe deposit box, or disassemble guns.
  • These are temporary measures until the person is recovered.

How to recognize a crisis and keep your loved one safe:

  • Putting time and distance between a suicidal person and a gun may save a life.
  • A suicidal crisis is often brief, but firearms are quite lethal when used in suicide attempts. Removing access to them may delay or prevent a suicide attempt or increase the chances of surviving an attempt.
  • For warning signs that someone may be thinking of suicide, click here.
  • If someone you care about is going through a painful crisis, experiencing depression, and/or showing warning signs of suicide.

There are three precautions you can take:

Lock

Store guns safely and securely when not in use. Change your gun locks if necessary, and make sure the keys and combination aren’t accessible.

Limit

Lock guns and ammo separately, or don’t keep ammunition in the home at all. Ask to temporarily keep the keys to any gun of a friend or family member who is struggling.

Remove

Temporarily store firearms off site until the situation improves, perhaps at a friend or relatives house. Gun shops and law enforcement may offer storage options.

Firearm safety

Proper storage of firearms and ammunition can make the difference between life and death. Knowing what the best options for storage can be vital to the safety of those that are in your life. Take the time to visit our page that will help you to learn about the best practices for safe storage of firearms and ammunition from us and other gun owners residing in the state of Utah. You can make a big difference in protecting those that are closest to you.

Why safe firearm storage matters for all Utah families:

  • Protecting your family involves more than keeping them safe from accident or attack.
  • Sadly, most teens who take their own lives are acting on impulse. They are often driven by a temporary problem, such as the end of their first romantic relationship.  Teens often plan their suicide for less than five minutes, an impulse that can be fatal with a gun.
  • Knowing this, YOU can be the voice in creating safety in your home. 
  • And if you ARE a teen, talk to your parents about locking up their firearms or even removing firearms from the home.  This can keep you and any siblings you have safer. 

86% of firearm deaths in Utah are suicides.

  • That is more than homicides, legal intervention, and accidental shootings combined.
  • Although most people at risk for suicide show warning signs that may alert you to the crisis, sometimes warning signs are missed by or intentionally hidden from family members.
  • To be on the safe side you can keep firearms locked up year round, though this won’t help if you or someone else with access to the firearm becomes at risk of suicide. It is important to be alert to the signs of a crisis so that you can take steps to keep safe.
  • For warning signs that someone may be thinking of suicide, click here.

**Under Utah’s Safe Harbor law (53-5c-201), a gun owner or spouse can store their firearms free of charge with law enforcement if they believe someone at home is a danger to self or others**

What else to do to help a person at risk:

Take any threat of suicide seriously.

Do not leave the person alone.

Listen to the person and offer them support without judgement.

Take action—-reduce access to household guns until they recover and click here for more information about how to reduce access to prescription medications.

Call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 1-800-273-TALK

Visit the Get Help Page for more resources