Always check that your barrel is clear of any obstruction, no matter how small. Stop immediately, and safely remove obstructions.
- Point the muzzle in a safe direction.
- Open the action, and make sure the chamber and magazine are unloaded.
- Check for debris in the barrel. If the firearm is a break-action, look through the barrel from the breech end, or use a barrel light to inspect the barrel for obstructions.
- Remove any obstructions with a cleaning rod.
- Check the barrel again to make sure no debris remains.