Federal and Texas state laws governing gun ownership don’t make any distinction between urban and rural areas. In other words, you can be a legal handgun owner regardless of where you live in the Lone Star State. When it comes to shooting your handgun in rural areas of Texas, there are some guidelines you’ll want to keep in mind to remain in compliance with the law. The firearms education professionals from Online Texas LTC, the experts who provide the highest-quality Texas LTC online course available, offer the following details about when you can shoot handguns in rural areas.
For Self-Defense, Shooting Is Legal on Your Own Property
Regardless of where you live, Texas law allows you to use your handgun for self-defense purposes. You can do this anywhere on your own property, even outdoors, if you believe there’s a danger to yourself or one of your family members. You also have the right to use force against trespassers and intruders. This applies in both urban and rural locations.
Property Size Is a Factor
Texas allows you to shoot your gun on your own property, as mentioned above, even if you live outside the city limits. The caveat is you’ll need anywhere from 10 to 50 acres of land available to shoot certain types of guns on your property for non-self-defense purposes if you live within city limits with ordinances restricting shooting. However, for rural areas with no ordinances restricting shooting, Texas law doesn’t specify a certain property size required to shoot.
You’ll Still Need to Be Mindful of Where Bullets Could Go
It’s great if you have rural property big enough for you to responsibly use your handgun. That being said, it’s only legal to shoot on your own property in Texas if you’re able to position yourself in a way that’s safe for you and anybody else who may be around you. For example, let’s say you set up a target area to practice with on your property, but the bullets could fly across a nearby fence and go into land owned by a neighbor. Not only is this extremely dangerous, but it’s also illegal. This is also true if bullets can stray to a nearby public roadway.
In fact, to shoot a handgun on your property, you need to be approximately 300 feet away from any residences or neighboring structures that are occupied. Again, you may have an advantage if you live in a rural area where homes are widely spaced out.
Reckless Shooting Isn’t Legal in Any Area
Many Texans love the freedom that goes along with living outside city limits in rural areas. However, you’ll still want to keep basic gun safety guidelines in mind when you use your handgun. This means remembering to:
• Be aware of what’s immediately around your intended target
• Not using hard surfaces like living trees as a target, since the bullets could bounce
• Never pointing your handgun at anything not meant to be a target
Note: Also, check to see what specific local gun laws apply in your rural location.
It’s essential for gun owners to be thoroughly familiar with the laws that govern where shooting is legal in their jurisdictions. If you have questions about the local laws about gun use in your area, reach out to knowledgeable professionals for guidance. When they need information on firearms safety, training, or LTC 101 online classes, gun owners trust the expertise of the pros from Online Texas LTC. If you have questions about any aspect of gun ownership in Texas, give us a call today at 512-675-2124.