Something I read from Kathy Jackson (Corned Cat) about firearm safety was you treat all firearms as loaded no matter what. There are no two different ways to handle a gun based on whether or not it's loaded you treat them all like they're loaded. If I can find the article I'll post the link.
The Four Rules | Cornered CatRule One:*“All guns are always loaded. (Treat them so!)”
This rule means that we must always treat every firearm with the same respect we would give a loaded weapon.
When we follow Rule One, even after we have just checked to see that the gun is unloaded, we still never do anything with it that we would not do with a loaded gun.
This is the cardinal rule, and all other safety rules follow naturally from it. At its heart, Rule One means that the other safety rules will always apply. It means we carefully protect our good habits, and never excuse our bad ones.
Some people apparently believe that merely checking to see the gun is unloaded means they can then treat it like a toy — that they can point it at their friends to pose for a picture, or at their training partners for disarming practice, or at a flimsy interior wall for dryfire, or at their own left hands to check trigger function. That’s a foolish, foolish idea that kills a certain number of people every single year.