Storing guns and ammunition together isn’t much different from storing petrol and a matchbox in the same space. It could be a recipe for disaster when accessed by the wrong hands. And by “wrong hands,” we mean kids or other individuals inexperienced at handling guns.
Also, while it may appear that keeping these items together is practical, it can be equivalent to lawbreaking.
Apart from reading gun safes reviews, it is your responsibility to learn what your state says about storing guns and ammo. Are there instances when these two can be held together? Let’s find out.
Guns and Ammo Storage Regulations
The law dictates that guns and ammo be stored in separate spaces for the sake of safety. This helps ensure no one gets unauthorized access to the firearm. Imagine if children were to get their hands on a loaded gun; the potential disaster that could ensue is unimaginable.
Irresponsible handling of guns is likely to get a gun owner charged with three offenses. These are unsafe storage, inappropriate use, and illegal transportation of a firearm. Unsafe storage offenses are among the most common charges handed out to gun owners.
If your firearm ends up getting misused by someone, the question will arise: how did that person gain access to your firearm. The apparent reason would be that you failed to store it properly.
Unloaded and Secure
When it comes to non-restricted firearms, you are required by law to store them unloaded or after the bolt’s removal. Alternatively, you can place your firearm in a safe room, device, or any container that no one but you or someone you’ve authorized can access.
Suppose a room can be accessed through an unbarred window. If a person can break into a closet by simply removing the hinges, it won’t be a good idea to store your guns there.
You can make a gun dysfunctional by removing its bolt. Thus, a gun in this state is safe to store anywhere. That said, the law does not exactly indicate how far the gun and the bolt should be kept apart.
As for restricted firearms, since they’re automatic, you are required by the law to store them in separate rooms or secure individual containers. Make sure to have a trigger lock for a restricted handgun.
When Can You Store Guns and Ammo Together?
Most circumstances call for storing these two apart, but there are two instances when you may keep them in the same place. The first has to do with non-restricted firearms. You may store these types of firearms with ammo, provided that the lockable container they’re in is almost impossible to break.
The second has to do with using the firearm. Hunting with, cleaning, or even holding the firearm means using it. In this case, the firearm could be loaded. Just make sure not to leave it anywhere when it’s still in that state.
Law enforcement can quickly arrest those who carelessly leave their firearms on tables. If the gun is loaded, you can argue by saying you were just using it. If it’s not loaded, then you should have nothing to worry about.
In an improper arrest, you can seek out the National Firearms Association for technical advice. The information they provide could help drop the charges against you before the trial. Going to trial for unsafe storage offenses can lead to a max prison sentence of two years.
Guns and Ammo Storage That Aligns With Child Safety
Security concerns about guns mostly have to do with child safety. That’s because they’re the most likely to be curious about firearms and ignorant of the damage they can cause. That’s why it’s never a good idea to store guns and ammo together when you have youngsters around.
Even if you don’t have kids, you may have nephews, nieces, or neighborhood kids coming over to visit. That’s why it’s essential to keep even the safe you keep your guns and firearms hidden. You should do whatever you can to ensure no one has unauthorized access to these weapons.
Another reason to hide the safe is so intruders or thieves can’t attempt to get their hands on your guns. If you leave it in the open and they can’t manage to break it, they could end up stealing the entire safe. Consider placing the safe in a hidden compartment under the floor or behind the wall where no one should be able to find it, let alone steal it.
Remember that if someone below 18 acquires your gun and is spotted with it in public or uses it to harm another person, you could end up with a felony charge.
Gun Safety First
According to the law, guns must be stored separately from their ammo. Safe gun storage requires disabling the gun and locking it inside a safe. Responsible gun ownership means ensuring that gun storage is secure for everyone, whether in the car, house, or office.