Injury Laws

Dangers of BB Gun

Dangers of BB Gun
What are BB guns?

BB guns are designated as a type of air gun that shoots projectiles, known as BBs.  A BB is a ball bearing or "bullet ball", if made of plastic.  It was first introduced in 1938 and became a popular toy.  It is currently used in both recreational and military/law enforcement training. 
What is the difference between a BB gun and an Airsoft gun?

An airsoft gun is technically designated as a BB gun.  The difference between them is in the diameter of the "pellet" used in firing and the velocity which the "pellet" travels.  BB guns have a range of velocity that varies from 300 ft/s to 1000 ft/s whereas airsoft guns range in velocity from 65 ft/s to 350 ft/s.  The significant difference between the two is the size of the BB that is fired.  In BB guns the BB is about 4.5 mm in diameter whereas the BB from an airsoft gun can be 6 mm in diameter.
What is the legality of BB guns?

Every state has different laws concerning BB guns.  The state of California criminalizes the sale or transfer of airsoft guns but not BBs.  The law specifically states that a weapon that expels a projectile not exceeding 6mm caliber is considered a BB device.  Many airsoft guns are designed to be imitations of popular and classic firearms.  For that reason the federal government requires that there be a 6 inch orange band wrapped around the tip at sale so that the gun can be recognized as an imitation and not an actual lethal weapon.  Because traditional BB guns are not developed to be imitations this law is inapplicable. 
The state of Massachusetts has instituted a ban on the use of BB guns, of any type, by individuals under the age of 18.  Violation of the law results in a $100 misdemeanor fine.  Michigan requires owners of BB guns to register the BB gun in the same way one would register a firearm.
What if I own a BB gun?
BB guns are inherently dangerous objects.  If you possess a BB gun it is your responsibility to use the utmost caution in operating the object.  If you do operate the BB gun in a manner that results in injury to another you could face criminal charges for assault, and depending on the caliber and velocity of the BB shot it could be upgraded to assault with a deadly weapon. 
If you have been charged with unauthorized possession of a BB gun, criminal assault or civil action due to an injury or if you have been the victim of an accident involving a BB gun it is in your best interest to consult a criminal or personal injury attorney at your nearest convenience.




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