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First time license applicant - Shotgun storage requirements

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  • 20-11-2022 6:13pm
    #1
    Registered Users Posts: 9,555 ✭✭✭


    Joined a club and started shooting this year. I'm looking to apply for a license and I've received conflicting information regarding storage requirements for a shotgun.

    Although the FCA1 form doesn't specify that a gunsafe is required in the home for a single shotgun, one senior member of the club said that it would be essential, and other said it wasn't.

    I'd appreciate any advice. Thanks!



Comments

  • Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 28,461 Mod ✭✭✭✭Cass


    The storage requirements for firearm storage are minimum standards, meaning they are the absolute minimum a person must adhere to before applying.

    It in SI 307/2009

    In the case of a shotgun the minimum standard is a trigger lock and the firearm tonne disassembled and the pieces stored separately.

    A gun safe would be above this minimum standard and as a general rule is much safer than just a trigger lock and disassembly hence the reason so many people advise first time firearm owners to go for a safe.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 282 ✭✭lmk123


    Just a follow up query, I recently got a rifle, I already had a gun safe for my shotgun, is the bolt supposed to be removed from the rifle and stored / hidden somewhere else in the house, do the guards actually do many inspections?



  • Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 28,461 Mod ✭✭✭✭Cass


    There is no legal requirement for it within the SI but again good sense would suggest that this be done. At a minimum don't have it in the gun, while in the safe.

    As for inspections. I usually get one every 3 to 5 years. So no way to know when or how frequent you'll get one.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 55 ✭✭alex90


    I'm a recent new licencee, firearms sergeant in the bridewell was insistent on a safe, showed him the receipt and he was happy then. Worth the extra security imo



  • Registered Users Posts: 373 ✭✭mufflets2


    Has anyone been asked to describe the security arrangements in place at the placewhere they will be staying if they are away with their gun?

    In my application for a licence for a .22lr I supplied shooting land permission on family land that is about 4 hours drive away from me and the above is one of the questions that the firearms garda wants answered before he considers my application.

    Also sorry for hijacking the thread Ive been told 1 need 2 safes 1 - Gun 2 - ammo

    and can someone confirm what Ive been told by the same firearms officer that according to the new leglislation I need to complete a gun safety course before the application can be considered.

    Cheers

    Post edited by mufflets2 on


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  • Registered Users Posts: 558 ✭✭✭JP22


    Regardless of what the legislation states, end of day the Super/Chief Super has the final say when granting the license. If he/she wants you to have a safe (that’s their prerogative), then you need a safe before they will grant the license.

    As Cass said, you don’t need a safe per-se for ammo storage; the regs simply require ammo to be securely stored and separate from the firearm. A second safe is fine if you have one; lots of lads use a small house safe (available in most good hard-wear dealers), others use lockable metal 30/50cal ammo cans or the bigger 20mm cans for 12G ammo. Best practice - bolts and shotgun fore-ends should be stored separately.



  • Registered Users Posts: 373 ✭✭mufflets2


    I presume that you are not suggesting that the Superintendents can just make up conditions as they like but must have a legal and justifiable (within the bounds of the legeslation) basis for their "requirements" lest their decision be overturned on appeal with associated consequences.

    anyway

    all opinions on my "Requirements" are greatly appreciated - I am no completely up to speed with the current legeslation

    are you supposed to have done a safety course and have provisions in place if you travel with the rifle

    and (I was going to get a safe anyway) but is having a safe for a .22lr a legal requirement?



  • Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 1,439 Mod ✭✭✭✭otmmyboy2


    In short, a safe is required for a 22,but it is not required for ammunition.

    Ammunition only requires a locked container, for both storage and transport.

    Never forget, the end goal is zero firearms of any type.

    S.I. No. 187/1972 - Firearms (Temporary Custody) Order - Firearms seized

    S.I. No. 21/2008 - Firearms (Restricted Firearms and Ammunition) Order 2008 - Firearm types restricted

    Criminal Justice (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 2009 - Firearms banned & grandfathered

    S.I. No. 420/2019 - Magazine ban, ammo storage & transport restricted

    Criminal Justice (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 2023 - 2023 Firearm Ban (retroactive to 8 years prior)



  • Registered Users Posts: 373 ✭✭mufflets2


    Thanks for that - I am trying to read through the legeslation at the moment



  • Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 28,461 Mod ✭✭✭✭Cass


    MODERATOR WARNING

    Thread cleaned up of any argumentative posts. Keep it civil as per forum and site rules.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 2,425 ✭✭✭garrettod


    @mufflets2

    Keep in mind that the Gardai get to decide whether you get your licence, or not :-)

    Why do you think that you might not need a firearms safety course / comptency course - have you a lot of previous firearms experience, particularly with. 22s?

    You know that you can arrange an hour or two at most local ranges, at a modest enough cost, and get evidence that you've completed the course. This would probably help your request for a licence.

    In fact, I would think that a lot of licenced shooters go back and do a safety course / proficiency course from time to time, just to refresh the basics. It's a good thing to do imho.

    While I share some of your frustration, it isn't unreasonable to want to know what safety precautions you intend to take - given a 4 hour each way journey, plus shooting, is unlikely to happen regularly, in one day. Will you stay at your family's farm sometimes, for example, and if so, where will the gun be kept on those overnight stays? Perhaps you'll stp en route for fuel, a bathroom break, or for food. Where's the gun then, and how safe is it?

    Thanks,

    G.



  • Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 28,461 Mod ✭✭✭✭Cass


    @mufflets2 As said at the start of this thread all security requirements are the minimum a person must have in place before applying. A Super or Chief Super can impose a higher level of security than the law states if they feel your circumstances warrant it.

    With regard to your traveling. If you plan to stay overnight at a place other than where the firearms are normally stored (as per your declaration on the FCA1) then it's reasonable to be asked where this place is and for the deciding officer to ask if it meets the security conditions of the law. This also includes security conditions as laid out by SI 420/2019 with regard to traveling with firearms.

    As said above a safe is the minimum for a rifle and with you currently owning a shotgun a safe is also the minimum for two unrestrictes firearms.

    Lastly with regard to the course. A person must show competence Inthe safe handling of a firearm before they can apply. This is done via four methods:

    • Previous experience with firearm handling
    • Letter of support from firearm owners
    • Training license held prior to applying
    • Competence course completed

    It would seem from your description that your FO wants you to compete a course for the safe handling of rifles as your precious experience lies solely with shotguns. Some FOs would consider the owning of a firearm as fulfilling this competence requirement but again it's within the remit of AGS to demand a course as proof if they feel it necessary.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 373 ✭✭mufflets2


    Thank you both for the responses

    Cass please clarify (if you can) leaving what is reasonable to one side for a minute , is it your understanding that when away with the rifle , at a shooting competition for example it is part of the licence application procedure to describe or secure (by use of a safe ect) the location where one is going to stay.?

    I am specifically asking about the law in relation to travelling (within the state) with a firearm.

    or

    anyone else who may know the answer to this - greatly appreciated



  • Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 28,461 Mod ✭✭✭✭Cass


    During the application process, no. In that you cannot know in advance where you will be or when.

    However, and If I'm wrong please correct me, as it's not part of the application process (FCA1) then at some point in the process you were contacted and either declared this to the FO or made reference to it. Now whether that declaration was made as additional information with your FCA1 or verbally on the phone is somewhat moot as the FO is now almost obliged to follow up with what the secure accommodation conditions you have in place when staying overnight away from the place the firearms are normally stored at.

    The law for traveling is that the firearm must be safe (bolt out, mag out, unloaded) and secured away from others in the car (case or other receptacle in the boot usually) . Ammo must be in a locked receptacle. When I say law I mean section 4(2)(g) of the Firearms Act 1925 as substituted by section 32 of the Criminal Justice Act 2006 as it provides "leeway" for a Super/Chief Super that when a firearms certificate is granted it may be subject to a condition or conditions.

    Therefore if you made it obvious to your FO that you may/will be staying overnight away from home they are going to see where the firearms are stored as the Commissioners guidelines specifically states:

    Under no circumstances should firearms or ammunition be left, even for short periods of time, in temporary dwellings (tents, caravans etc.) or unattended vehicles as these are not secure.

    If the range you are traveling to has storage facilities then this solves your problem. If you're staying with friends or family and there is a safe you store them in you're sorted. Anything else may be seen as not acceptable.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 373 ✭✭mufflets2


    Many thanks - very helpfull - I will endeavour to post the resolution to this in due course.



  • Registered Users Posts: 39,122 ✭✭✭✭Mellor


    They can’t go rogue and make up their own laws. But as Cass says, they are the minimum requirements they they must insist on. If the circumstances warrant it, reasonable additional requirements can be added.

    It’s not part of the FCA1 process in general. How we the FCA1 does ask for addresses of permissions. In that case OP is relying on a single permission 4 hours from home. I think it’s reasonable to notice that anytime he wishes to use the firearm, he’ll need to store it at that location. Could be a relatives home, a B&B etc. In this case enquiring about security at that location is reasonable.



  • Registered Users Posts: 373 ✭✭mufflets2


    @Mellor

    Thanks for the response

    The land permission is not my only permission I am a member of a local club (it is additional).

    Would yourself or anyone else suggest a reasonable safety precautions/suggestions to the firearms officer

    for example should I offer to have a safe installed in the accomadation that i would be staying at - im just conscous that this could get out of hand,

    what about if I was away somewhere else at say a shooting competition? what happens then .

    I am hardly expected to have safes installeed at a list of locations ?

    Perhaps someone who has travelled with their firearm could offer a suggestion.



  • Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 28,461 Mod ✭✭✭✭Cass


    Yup, exactly the word/phrase I used above. Reasonable.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 39,122 ✭✭✭✭Mellor


    That’s a bit different then. I misinterpreted your post above to mean you what the sole permission. As you may only occasional shoot up there, it’s a bit different.

    I wouldn’t volunteer to store a safe without being asked personally. I know people to camp/hunt overnight and use a lockable steel box on the back of the pick for storage.



  • Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 28,461 Mod ✭✭✭✭Cass


    @mufflets2 I'm not sure why you're overthinking this or perhaps even obsessing a little over it

    The secure accommodation would really only come into effect if you plan to stay overnight. If you're driving to a location, spending the majority of the day there and then traveling home it won't be an issue.

    Your only concern in such a scenario is that the guns are not left unattended and always in your possession.

    If you plan to stay overnight then you must have them securely locked away. You ask for anyone who has done this, well I have, many times. I either use a ranges storage facility, a safe at the location or some other means of securing the firearm and ammo.

    Not to be a dick or harsh but it's not rocket science and the law is fairly clear on the matter.

    I asked above and it's a curiosity more so than anything but did you declare your travel plans to the FO which raised this line of enquiry or did they ask based on your home address and the location of your permission. IOW did they make the leap that you might need to stay overnight.

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  • Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 28,461 Mod ✭✭✭✭Cass


    Leaving firearms in unattended vehicles is one of the few scenarios actually named in the Commissioners Guidelines (that list while naming some scenarios is not limited to the few mentioned) so I don't know how successful making such a claim as meeting the storage requirements would be.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 373 ✭✭mufflets2


    @Cass

    "Not to be a dick or harsh but it's not rocket science and the law is fairly clear on the matter."

    I dont know why you are getting frustrated , maybe I was not clear, one of my permissions is at such a distance as it is reasonable to assume that one would need to stay overnight.

    I have been asked as part of the licencing procedure about the security arrangements under such circumstances.

    I would have thought it may be an issue worth clarifying on the forum.

    The only one to offer a practical suggestion so far is Mellor (thank you)

    if your suggestion is to offer to put it in a local gun club or have a safe installed at the location where I am staying then it is contrary to Mellors suggestion

    and not clear.

    Many thanks for clarifying the legal situation but I am looking for solutions and perhaps share a learning experience.



  • Registered Users Posts: 39,122 ✭✭✭✭Mellor


    Yes, you can’t leave them unattended. You stay with the truck when the firearms are locked in the back. It’s also a good idea to make the lockable cabinet meet a similar standard as a gun cabinets, not a plastic box



  • Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 28,461 Mod ✭✭✭✭Cass


    Mufflet2 - I dont know why you are getting frustrated , maybe I was not clear, one of my permissions is at such a distance as it is reasonable to assume that one would need to stay overnight.

    Its not frustration, it's lack of comprehension. It's a common problem as the written word lacks context or tone and after 14 or so years on this forum it'll take far more than the above to frustrate me.

    Mufflet2 - I have been asked as part of the licencing procedure about the security arrangements under such circumstances.

    You asked about your situation and the replies have told you what the law is, what is reasonable in terms of expectations and then solutions for storage. You asked again about what to do hence my confusion. Your only options were laid out above.

    Mufflet2 - i would have thought it may be an issue worth clarifying on the forum

    Absolutely. That is the purpose of the forum.

    Mufflet2 - The only one to offer a practical suggestion so far is Mellor (thank you)

    Where was that?

    Mufflet2 - if your suggestion is to offer to put it in a local gun club or have a safe installed at the location where I am staying then it is contrary to Mellors suggestion

    Again I don't see Mellor's suggestion so excuse me if I don't address it or comment on it. Perhaps you might quote it. I'm on a phone and not used to viewing the site this way so may have overlooked it.

    Mufflet2 - and not clear.

    Unfortunately my suggestion of storing on range facilities (if available/being used) or a safe in friends/family home cannot be made clearer.

    Mufflet2 - Many thanks for clarifying the legal situation but I am looking for solutions and perhaps share a learning experience

    The reason for referencing the law is because it will limit your options and anything suggested outside of the law is illegal, hence forbidden to be discussed on this forum. For example if someone told you to just wrap the gun in a blanket and leave it in the back seat of the car, well it your decision if you do so but the law does not allow for it and I would be forced to reply to the comment to clarify the law and possibly act in my capacity as Moderator by deleting the illegal comment.

    The other aspect is your original post spoke of your FO wanting clarification on the storage accommodations you have in place when traveling. This means it's not me or anyone in this forum you must satisfy, but your FO. A shotgun only would be easy enough, if the FO only demanded minimum storage requirements as you can disassemble it and use a trigger lock but a rifle, by law, must have a safe.

    So the only option open to you is a safe in a family members home where the rifle can be stored for any overnight visits.

    You have little to no leeway on this.

    I'll stress again every thread on this forum is useful and informational to someone so it's good to discuss this topic, but the actual solution is fairly straight forward.

    Forum Charter - Useful Information - Photo thread: Hardware - Ranges by County - Hunting Laws/Important threads - Upcoming Events - RFDs by County

    If you see a problem post use the report post function. Click on the three dots on the post, select "FLAG" & let a Moderator deal with it.

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  • Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 28,461 Mod ✭✭✭✭Cass


    That might work but as I said above to Mufflet2 only the FO will have the final say as to whether that will be permissible. We all say the Super has the final word and they do, but 99% of the application will be processed, reviewed and done by the FO. So any concerns they have will be addressed before it goes to the Super for signing.

    Forum Charter - Useful Information - Photo thread: Hardware - Ranges by County - Hunting Laws/Important threads - Upcoming Events - RFDs by County

    If you see a problem post use the report post function. Click on the three dots on the post, select "FLAG" & let a Moderator deal with it.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 373 ✭✭mufflets2


    Ok Cass you have done your part very well : I for one am clear on the legal obligations associated with this delemma

    By way of summary

    I need a solution to the question of what do you intend to do with your firearm while on overnights away with the firearm? (as part of the licencing procedure)

    The solution needs to be safe and reasonable.

    so far I have

    cass :

    1. Offer to put it in a local gun club : I cant do this there is not one near.
    2. Offer to have a safe installed at your brothers house : I am reluctant to offer this as it opens a door of potential over-reach and in my opinion implies the instillation of safes wherever one is staying.

    Mellor :

    1. Do not offer to install a safe (in the house where you will be staying) unless you are specifically asked to do so. Have the gun secured in a locked Box. Which is movable (fits in the car) (I am inclined to go with this)

    all suggestions are appreciated particularly from anyone who has wrangled with this as part of their licencing procedure.

    Post edited by mufflets2 on


  • Registered Users Posts: 527 ✭✭✭BSA International


    Ask the FO what he will accept?



  • Registered Users Posts: 373 ✭✭mufflets2


    Yes ill probably do that anyway

    just like to investigate things first and have some suggestions ready as well.

    Thanks



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