This past July I attended a DNR Hunter safety course with my 10-year-old son. I had taken the course over 30 years ago when my father introduced me to hunting so my perspective had changed somewhat with me now being the father and introducing my son to the sport.
The instructors did an excellent job, but their task given the relatively short amount of time to complete the course of not only teaching the students safe firearm handling, but also getting them familiar with the different actions of each firearm was a lot for the instructor to teach, and a lot for the student to learn.
The most common struggle I saw with the students was knowing when the particular action on the training guns were fully closed or open. I could not help thinking that sensors connected to a small L.E.D. would be a great addition for not only the students but especially for the instructors as this would give immediate visual feedback. Instead of waiting for a non-function of the firearm to occur, the instructor could see that the action was not in the correct position and explain to the student immediately what they had done wrong.
Another key element of firearm safety is keeping the safety on until ready to fire, this is another perfect application for a sensor and an L.E.D., this would give the instructor real-time visual confirmation that the safety is on, that it was switched to the fire position at the correct time, and returned to the safe position after the shot.
For many students, these safety classes are the first time they are handling firearms. The addition of proximity sensors and L.E.D.’s ultimately would make for an even more thorough training course by allowing the instructors to be more aware of issues the students are having in real time, and providing students the confidence that they are correctly operating the actions and safeties.