According to authorities, despite five people, including their parents, in their home, a three-year-old girl accidentally shot and killed her four-year-old sister with a firearm near Houston, Texas.

The shooting happened late on Sunday, and Harris County Sheriff Ed Gonzalez claimed that the three-year-old got hold of a loaded, semi-automatic weapon.

After hearing a single gunshot, family members entered a bedroom and discovered the four-year-old child there, "unresponsive," he claimed.

Gonzalez emphasized that it looked like the gunshot was an accident.

Gonzalez said, "It simply looks like another tragic tale of a kid getting hold of a gun and inflicting harm on someone else.

According to the Pew Research Center, about 40% of US households have weapons, and most also have children.

On the other hand, the School of Public Health at Johns Hopkins University reports that less than half of homes owning guns keep them securely.

Almost 44,000 gun-related fatalities were reported in the US last year.

According to the Gun Violence Archive, shootings accounted for roughly 1,700 incidents of under-18 fatalities last year, including 314 involving children under 11.

With 30 million citizens, Texas is one of the most straightforward states in the union to obtain a gun, and carrying one is not prohibited.

"This is very preventable," Gonzalez said of the incident Sunday.

"You must ensure that you are a responsible gun owner by keeping your guns in a secure location. More needs to be done than simply warning young children not to handle weapons "said he.