Replica firearms, including gel blasters, are becoming increasingly popular in Queensland, leading to an increase in the number of stores and online retailers who specialise in these items.
The Queensland Police Service (QPS) are reminding Queenslanders who have purchased or are thinking of purchasing a replica firearm to familarise themselves with the change of Queensland legislation coming into place from February 1, 2021.
The legislation details:
- Replica firearms, such as gel blasters, will not be classified as a firearm or category of weapon
- Replica firearms do not require a licence or need to be registered with Weapons Licensing
- When not in use, gel blasters must be stored securely, for example, in a locked cupboard or a bag, but not necessarily in a gun safe
- When being transported, a gel blaster has to be out of sight, for example, in the boot of a car or in a bag that does not silhouette a firearm
- Anyone owning a gel blaster must have a reasonable excuse for having one, for example, being a collector of replica weapons, or a member of a club that uses them recreationally.
Acting Assistant Commissioner Brian Connors said since 2018, more than 100 people had been charged with misusing a gel blaster.
“Replica firearms, such as gel blasters, can look similar to handguns, shotguns and rifles from around the world,” Acting Assistant Commissioner Connors said.
“It is incredibly important for all people possessing replica firearms to familarise themselves with these new rules.”
Acting Assistant Commissioner Connors said the QPS commenced an awareness campaign on the responsible use and possession of gel blasters in 2019 with the support of the industry.
“The ‘Stop and Think’ campaign will continue to promote the safe use of gel blasters as a popular pastime, support small businesses that sell equipment and supplies, and ensure community safety,” he said.
“The public’s safety is of the utmost importance.
“Gel blasters and other replicas can look very similar to real firearms, and we don’t want them used to threaten people or commit crimes.
“We want to see all owners adhering to the new legislation with responsible storage, transportation and use of Gel Blasters.
“We continue to encourage members of the public to report inappropriate behaviour.”
For more information on replica firearms, please visit https://www.police.qld.gov.au/units/weapons-licensing.