Airsoft guns are a type of pellet gun that uses spring, gas or electrical mechanisms to fire small, plastic pellets. Airsoft guns are made to look like real handguns, often times exact replicas of various real guns. Some airsoft guns have the exact same kind of manufacturer markings. They can shoot at very high speeds.
BB guns are similar to airsoft guns except they are air-powered guns that can shoot pointed pellets made out of metal. They can shoot farther and faster than airsoft guns and are often used for hunting. The Red Ryder BB Gun is the most famous BB gun on the market and is sold as a toy.
Can Airsoft and BB Guns Cause Injuries?
Yes. Both guns can shoot pellets at high rates of speed, and therefore are known to cause personal injuries. One of the main dangers of Airsoft and BB guns is the risk of eye injury. Airsoft guns can shoot pellets hundreds of feet per second. In that regard, they should be handled with the utmost care.
As mentioned above, BB guns are marketed and used as toys. They can cause their users to suffer from eye injuries, skin injuries (due to the velocity of the pellets, which can reach over 200 MPH), and infections from open puncture wounds.
Both guns can even cause fatality. The U.S. Consumer Safety Commission estimates that BB guns and pellet guns cause four deaths annually in the United States.
Are There Any Other Risks Associated with Airsoft and BB Guns?
Because BB guns are made to look like real firearms, there have been numerous instances of people being mistakenly shot or tased by police officers who believe that the person carrying the gun was armed.
Even some children have been killed by police who mistakenly believe the child was holding and firing real handguns.
What are the Airsoft Gun Laws?
Airsoft gun laws vary by state; however, federal law states that an individual must be at least 18 years old to purchase an airsoft gun. Nevertheless, airsoft guns are not considered lethal, and therefore can be used by people of all ages.
Some states have specific laws with regard to airsoft guns, such as New York, which requires imitation firearms must be made clear with brightly coated plastic or colors. Conversely, San Francisco makes all replica guns illegal.
What are BB Gun Laws?
BB gun laws vary from state to state. Whereas some states restrict BB guns completely, others have no restrictions. For example, California makes it a misdemeanor to sell, loan or transfer a BB gun to a minor. Massachusetts makes it illegal for children under 18 years old to have a BB gun in a public place.
What if I’m Injured by an Airsoft or BB Gun?
If you are injured while using an Airsoft or BB gun, it is difficult to recover damages because you assume the risk that you will be injured by virtue of using the gun.
If the gun was defective, you may be able to recover if you’re able to demonstrate that your injury was a result of the defect. If you are injured by someone using an Airsoft or BB gun, you can sue for negligence.
Do I Need a Lawyer for Airsoft/BB Gun Injuries?
Airsoft and BB gun injuries occur by the thousands every year. Most of these involve persons who are aged 20 or younger. Persons should exercise the utmost caution when using such guns. If you have been injured due to a defective product, you may wish to contact a personal injury lawyer for advice.
Also, if you have been involved in a crime or an incident involving an Airsoft gun, you should contact a criminal defense attorney immediately.