The fundamental NRA rules for safe gun handling are:
ALWAYS Keep The Gun Pointed In A Safe Direction
This is the primary rule of gun safety. Common sense
dictates the safest direction, depending on different circumstances.
ALWAYS Keep Your Finger Off The Trigger Until Ready To Shoot
When holding a gun, rest your finger alongside the frame and outside
the trigger guard. Until you are actually ready to fire, do not touch the trigger.
ALWAYS Keep The Gun Unloaded Until Ready To Use
If you do not know how to open the action or inspect the chamber(s),
leave the gun alone and get help from someone who does.