To protect your family, lock up your guns. Buy safe storage devices and lockboxes this holiday season.

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IF recent statistics are any indication, no amount of holiday cheer could halt gun violence throughout the region.

The Seattle Police Department’s blog features the usual key words in its latest crime reports: “stolen gun,” “teen shot in ankle,” “shots fired at Aurora Motel,” “Broadway and Pike shooting” — and that’s just since Nov. 16.

A drive-by shooting last weekend in Seattle’s bustling Capitol Hill neighborhood reportedly injured five people and leaves this community once again pondering what can be done to keep everyone safer.

A simple first step would be for gun owners to keep their weapons locked up so they do not get into the wrong hands. Law enforcement reports many guns used by criminals are stolen. Also, suicides make up 70 percent of gun-related deaths in King County.

With Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals flashing before consumers’ eyes, anyone who is around firearms should consider taking advantage of a special deal that Public Health – Seattle and King County has struck with some gun retailers through the end of December.

Shoppers can receive 10 to 15 percent off gun-storage devices and lockboxes by mentioning “Public Health” or “LOK-IT-UP” at participating retailers.

This is a pragmatic approach to helping solve a public health and safety crisis.

Between 2010 and 2014, 158 kids ages 17 and under in Washington were hospitalized from gunshot-related wounds — 108 of those teens and children died. (In King county, that number includes 42 hospitalized and 23 killed.)

Here’s another estimate that should concern parents: About 200,000 children statewide live in households with unlocked firearms.

Individuals can, and should, take simple steps to protect their families.

To see the list of participating gun retailers, go to: