MIAMI (CBSMiami) – Concern about the coronavirus is showing itself apparently in the form of a spike in gun sales.
“We’ve definitely seen a spike. People are just trying to be better prepared,” said Charles Berrane from Warrior Gun Range.
Gun stores around South Florida and the country are seeing an increase in business. Berrane said some customers are preparing for the unknown.
“It’s just been a tough time. A lot of people are just trying to be better prepared for the virus. See what happens, we just don’t know,” he said.
Their gun range is still operating, practicing social distancing of course. Responsible gun owners still going to test their aim.
“This is where I got my license from. I figure I come back, shoot a few rounds, see how my skills are,” one patron said.
The ammunition site Ammo.com, which supplies customers in 46 states with ammo, is reporting huge numbers between February 23rd and March 15th.
The site has seen 77% increase in website traffic and 309% increase in revenue compared to the first three weeks in February.
Shuan Hernandez, a gun shop owner in Texas, said his stores are busier than Black Friday minus the frenzy.
“Nobody is coming in in a panic, ‘I need a gun now.’ No we haven’t seen that,” he said.
Stores in other states are reporting 200% uptick in the sale of firearms and ammunition.
But some owners, like Erin Latsha in Arkansas believes it’s more nuanced than just the outbreak of COVID-19.
“I think it’s a lot of things. Walmart has stopped selling handgun ammo. So that’s a lot of it,” Latsha said. “And just… it’s an election year. That’s a big time for people when they hear, ‘We’re going to take your guns or we’re not going to sell this kind of ammo.’ They tend to want to stock up a little bit.”
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