TYR Tactical

Gunfighter Moment – Larry Vickers

Firearms safety in the real world- this is the safety brief I give in my classes;

1) Know your target and what is beyond it; on the range you have something ( a berm for Instance ) that acts as a bullet stop- in the real world you can’t predict what your bullet stop will be or if you even will have one. Understand if you launch a bullet Downrange in the real world you own it so it’s in your best interest to make sure you hit your target and you know what is beyond your target in case you miss it or over penetrate

2) Treat weapons as if they are loaded at all times; people know we need to do this but the fact of the matter is once most people have convinced themselves a firearm is cleared they are likely to point it at anything or anybody – including themselves. This is a seriously bad habit that could mean life or death someday. Chances are good if you handle weapons long enough you will eventually have an unintentional discharge – at that point the only thing that will keep things from getting ugly fast is the proper handling habits you have built over time. This is a major issue- learn it and live it.

3) Do not allow your muzzle to cross anything your not willing to destroy; in the military and LE often times individuals sweep each other with your muzzle – that’s not a good thing but is sometimes unavoidable – my approach is know when you are doing it and minimize it to the best of your ability. In the civilian sector pointing a gun at somebody is a really big deal so you have to be switched on 100% of the time in terms of muzzle awareness.

4) Finger off the trigger until you are ready to shoot; this is rightly considered the golden rule of firearms safety as it is the fail safe in case I happen to sweep someone with my muzzle I won’t put a bullethole in them because my finger is off the trigger. Fortunately the popularity of guns like the Glock has made this rule universally accepted – that’s a good thing as not long ago having your finger on the trigger was seen as the best way to be ‘ready’ for instant action – in reality what you were ‘ready’ for was an AD

These are the safety rules I highlight in every class – I believe in them and you should to – be safe and see you at the range

-Larry Vickers
Vickers Tactical Inc.
Host of TacTV


Larry Vickers of Vickers Tactical in a retired US Army 1st SFOD-Delta combat veteran with years of experience in the firearms industry as a combat marksmanship instructor and industry consultant. In recent years he has hosted tactical firearms related TV shows on the Sportsman Channel with the latest being TacTV of which Bravo Company is a presenting sponsor.Larry Vickers special operations background is one of the most unique in the industry today; he has been directly or indirectly involved in the some of the most significant special operations missions of the last quarter century. During Operation Just Cause he participated in Operation Acid Gambit – the rescue of Kurt Muse from Modelo Prison in Panama City, Panama. As a tactics and marksmanship instructor on active duty he helped train special operations personnel that later captured Saddam Hussein and eliminated his sons Uday and Qusay Hussein. In addition he was directly involved in the design and development of the HK416 for Tier One SOF use which was used by Naval Special Warfare personnel to kill Osama Bin Laden. Larry Vickers has developed various small arms accessories with the most notable being his signature sling manufactured by Blue Force Gear and Glock accessories made by Tangodown. In addition he has maintained strong relationships with premium companies within the tactical firearms industry such as BCM, Aimpoint, Black Hills Ammunition, Wilson Combat and Schmidt & Bender.

Larry Vickers travels the country conducting combat marksmanship classes for law abiding civilians, law enforcement and military and has partnered with Alias Training to coordinate classes to best meet the needs of the students attending the class.


Gunfighter Moment is a weekly feature brought to you by Alias Training & Security Services. Each week Alias brings us a different Trainer and in turn they offer some words of wisdom.

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4 Responses to “Gunfighter Moment – Larry Vickers

  1. jbgleason says:

    No truer words. I continue to be stunned when I see people who make a living with a gun disregarding one or more of these rules. Being a “professional” means you are more stringent with the basic rules, not that you can disregard them. How about we go through 2014 without an accidental shooting death during training?

  2. BradKAF308 says:

    None of us are perfect. So if somebody highlights your muzzle direction or you are highlighting someone elses don’t be a DB about it. Take it and be more aware.

  3. Steve says:

    the basic 4 rules never change and are perfectly simplistic in their meaning.

  4. Joe Momma says:

    I see in #4 he says AD. Isn’t ND the new norm? Or maybe it’s a mil thing? I know in LE it’s negligent discharge as it was found that AD implied “well, shot happens, it’s an accident”. With ND it’s stressed that “it was YOUR FAULT!”