October 28th, 2010

Suppressor Sales Rise in United States

Reflecting increased awareness among shooters of the benefits of firearms noise reduction, suppressor sales in the USA rose 9% in the past year (10/1/2009-9/30/2010) compared to the previous 12 months. This is based on BATFE records of NFA transfer stamps issued through state Form 4s. According to a report from the National Shooting Sports Foundation, suppressors (also called silencers, sound moderators, or ‘cans’) are becoming increasingly popular as more shooters learn the proper procedures for lawful suppressor ownership.

Texas is #1 in Suppressor Ownership
The three top states for BATFE-approved suppressor sales are Texas (3,621 sales), Florida (2,053 sales) and Georgia (1,153 sales). Ironically, in some of the most “eco-conscious” states, such as California, suppressor ownership by regular citizens is still prohibited. But we may see further liberalization of state laws on suppressors, as the public perception of firearms sound moderators evolves.

Well-informed American legislators have taken note that suppressors are legal (and widely used) in many European countries. In fact, in some European nations, the use of a suppressor is mandatory if you want to shoot or hunt near populated areas. The Europeans understand that sound moderators provide important safety protection for shooters while reducing “noise pollution” affecting the general populace. For both shooters and non-shooters, the benefits of suppressors far outweigh the problems associated with the use of silencers by criminals. Unfortunately, there are still many states where anti-gun decision-makers continue to block private suppressor ownership, even where that conflicts with health and safety rules. Ammoland.com reports that: “In the states where [suppressors] are still illegal the Laws and Regulations on Noise Pollution, Health & Safety at Work etc. are in direct conflict with Firearms Legislation outlawing the use of Suppressors on Firearms.”

To learn more about suppressor design features and ownership requirements, we suggest you read ZaK Smith’s article: Modern Rifle Suppressors — What You Need to Know.

NSSF Approved Silencer Report for 2010

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