Victorians will be subject to new firearm storage requirements for category A, B, C, D longarms and general category handguns coming in 2022.
In August 2022, various changes to Schedule 4 of the Firearms Act 1996 will begin.
Current and future firearm owners must (where applicable) make sure their firearm storage complies with these changes.
Many current firearm owners will already have storage which meets the updated standards. This particularly applies if they have a purpose built, commercially manufactured gun safe.
All firearm owners should check their current storage against the new requirements. They should prepare to replace or upgrade their arrangements before 30 August 2022.
The new requirements
From 30 August 2022, the following must be met to ensure compliance with the law:
- Firearms must be stored in a purpose-built steel storage receptacle
- The steel must be of a thickness of at least 1.6mm (which complies with Australian/New Zealand Standard 1594:2002).
- If the receptacle weighs less than 150 kilograms when it is empty, it must be bolted to the structure of the premises.
- The receptacle must be locked with a lock of sturdy construction when the firearm is stored in it.
What firearm owners must do
Victorian firearm owners must check their current storage against the new requirements.
Receptacles must be purpose built for firearm storage. This means they were specifically built to keep firearms in.
The upcoming storage changes also apply to:
- people who are newly licensed or applying for a licence
- people who plan to buy or get a firearm.
The new storage conditions mean that licence holdersmust not storefirearms inreceptacles built ofhard wood.
In addition, firearms must not be stored in receptacles built of steel that is less than 1.6mm in thickness.
Placement of firearm storage receptacles – category A or B longarms
This brings the storage of category A and B longarms into line with current requirements for category C, D, and general category handguns.
This means that if the storage receptacle weighs less that 150kg (when empty) it must be bolted to the structure of the premises.
Locks for firearm receptacles
When firearms are stored in the receptacle, it must be locked with a lock of sturdy construction.
All references to locks in Schedule 4 of the Act will now use this language.
More information about these changes will be posted here in the coming months, so please check back for updates.