It can be carried condition 1 (Hammer cocked, safety engaged) but there is no grip safety like the 1911. Some have a problem with this, others don't. The safety isn't as "positive" in feel as a 1911 or other gun with a manual safety.
The Hi Power, or P35 (think 92FS and M9 in terms of names) has been an issued side arm around the globe, probably the most issued sidearm ever. It's the grand daddy of all double stacks.
In terms of the following:
It does well in all three, however there are some cons to be aware of.
Pending on hand size, the Hi Power hammer is prone to "biting" the hand of the shooter and if you are a victim of this there only real way around it is to have the hammer replaced or altered with that of a "No Bite" design. The Hi Power incorporates a magazine disconnect safety that prevents the gun from being fired without the magazine in place. This mechanism is directly integrated with the trigger and makes for a poor trigger pull considering the single action nature of the gun. The trigger pull can be improved by the removal of the magazine disconnect, but the reliability of the gun will decrease as the magazine disconnect mechanism also assists in the return of the trigger. This can be compensated for with a higher poundage trigger return spring, but it's still not as forceful of a return (At least in my gun it isn't).
The HP comes with a 13rd magazine (when talking about it in 9mm), and aftermarket magazines up to 17 rounds or more.
Hi Powers for the most part are pricey when compared to similar models, for a while Charles Daly made them at a lower price point and they were said to be good guns for the money, but with the recent demise of Charles Daly and the fact they discontinued the HP even before their closure, they may be hard to find.
The Hi Power's method of ignition is quire unique, if not just a little strange, I'll leave that up to you to Google to figure out.
If you like the HP, but are looking for something a little more modern, I would highly suggest the CZ75 and other CZ models.
For more Hi Power info, Google "Stephen Camp" and read everything he has to say on the Hi Power.
Now for a picture of my Hi Power and shameless plug for On Target Custom who did this fine piece.