Only 2 percent of Internet pages with information on firearm storage correctly identified all four practices that encompass safe gun storage.
In frontier days, gun safety was a given but in the modern era most kids don't grow up around guns - and movies contain a lot of gun violence without any real exposure to the consequences so children unfamiliar with firearms may regard them as toys or not realize that are loaded.
The four safety measures recommended at the American Academy of Pediatrics National Conference&Exhibition in Washington, DC, are keeping guns locked and unloaded, and storing ammunition locked and in a separate location, said lead researcher Katherine L. Freundlich, MD, FAAP, a clinical instructor in the department of pediatrics and communicable diseases at the University of Michigan Medical School. The AAP generally thinks guns should be banned so these recommendations are not really practical. People who want a gun for home defense can't realistically keep a gun locked and unloaded with the ammunition locked and in a completely separate location or they would be a statistic.
The researchers identified 87 web pages using the 10 most common Google search terms related to firearm storage in the United States and they graded the information incomplete or incorrect if it did not meet the AAP standard. From that, they concluded web pages visited by consumers using common search methods are unlikely to provide adequate guidance about safe firearm and ammunition storage in the home.
"Everyone who is a parent, grandparent, aunt, uncle, or neighbor to children should want to protect them from needless firearm injury and death," Dr. Freundlich said. "People who are considering turning to the Internet for guidance on home gun storage should be aware that the information they find is unlikely to give them all the advice they need."