With gun safety in mind, Rob Pincus explores the options for staging a defensive handgun in a clandestine storage unit or quick-access safe in the home.
During the stress of a home-defense incident, it’s easy to press the trigger on a handgun as you try to retrieve it from its storage area. The results of this can be a negligent discharge in which you or another innocent are hit, or causing the gun to malfunction — both negative results.
What are your options for safely staging a defensive firearm so this doesn’t happen?
If the gun has a round in the chamber, one safe choice is to keep the gun in a holster when it’s in a Tactical Walls unit or quick-access safe. There’s no way you can accidentally press the trigger when you’re quickly grabbing the gun. Remove the gun and the holster together.
A variation that Tactical Walls units are set up for is to leave the holstered gun up against the hook-and-loop fastener, then you can reach in, pull the gun out of the holster and it’s ready to use. Note this works only with certain types of holsters.
Keep in mind that another reason to have the gun holstered in the storage area is that you can remove the gun and holster together and place the holster on your body. Depending on the circumstances, working with a holstered gun during a home-defense incident may be preferable to keeping it in your hand at all times.
Another option that works with Tactical Walls is to keep a trigger guard on a lanyard in the unit. Place the trigger guard over the loaded-chamber handgun and place the handgun against the magnetized surface of the Tactical Walls unit, securing the gun. Reach in and pull the handgun to separate it from the trigger guard, and you’re ready to go.
NO ROUND IN THE CHAMBER
If none of the above options works for you, the safest answer is to keep the gun in the storage area with a loaded magazine but no round in the chamber. That way, if you accidentally touch the trigger, you will not fire a round. This does mean you must make one more step — racking the slide — before you are ready to engage a home invader. But your regular handgun training and practice should make this move intuitive.
I’ve used the tactical walls and the drop down shelf at a convention last year and was not impressed. Both seemed harder to use than they should and the shelf took a very long time to drop down to where I could grab the staged AR.
I’ll just rely on condition1 and the thumb safety.