Airsoft Legalities in the US – Know the Airsoft Gun Laws Before You Play!

Airsoft Gun Laws – There are many legalities related to playing Airsoft in the United States. For those of you who may not know what Airsoft is, I’ll be more than happy to provide a brief explanation of it for you. Airsoft is a game in which players defeat their opponents by firing non-metallic pellets at them from a compressed air gun. These air guns are powered by one of three ways, which are manual spring-load, electrically powered gearbox or gas.

In the United States, there typically is no minimum age requirement for playing Airsoft. This is because Airsoft guns are not considered firearms here and are therefore considered legal for all ages. However, common sense needs to prevail here. I think it’s obvious to most that you probably wouldn’t want a young child such as a toddler playing with an Airsoft gun. This is because although not nearly as dangerous as a regular firearm, Airsoft guns can still potentially cause some serious injuries if not handled properly.

The individual laws actually vary from state to state, so before purchasing an air gun for your child or letting them use one, you’ll want to do a little research on your state’s laws. For example, in Minnesota, it’s considered illegal for any child under the age of 14 to be in possession of an Airsoft gun unless they’re being supervised by a parent or other adult. Also, it’s illegal for any child under the age of 18 in Minnesota to purchase an Airsoft gun without first obtaining their parents permission.

In California, only adults are allowed to buy Airsoft guns. Children in California are only permitted to use Airsoft guns if they’ve first acquired their parents’ permission. If you’re the parent of a child who wants to use an Airsoft gun, there is one major factor that you’ll want to take into consideration.

Airsoft guns are often very detailed and realistic looking and have many times been mistaken for the real thing by members of law enforcement. Therefore, if you do decide to let your child use an Airsoft gun, never, ever let them use it in public, as it’s possible that a police officer might think the gun is a real firearm and consequently shoot them. Also, to help differentiate an Airsoft gun from a regular firearms weapons, most states require the Airsoft guns to have a bright orange tip on them.

One tragic example of a child not taking this requirement seriously occurred in Longwood, Florida back in 2006. A student brought his air gun to school and since he had previously painted over the orange tip. A sheriff’s deputy assumed that his air gun was a “real” gun. The student had been threatening the other kids with it. Fearing for his life as well as the lives of all the teachers and students there. He shot the student, and the student subsequently died.

So, please make sure that your child understands the importance of having a highly visible 6 mm orange tip on their Airsoft gun. The possession of Airsoft guns in United States schools is simply not tolerated. Depending on the nature of the offense. The most common punishments for kids having Airsoft guns at school is either a temporary suspension. Or in some cases the child may be permanently expelled from that school..

Next, let’s discuss what type of Airsoft safety equipment is required to play soft air games in the U.S. So far there isn’t any safety equipment that’s legally required in order to play Airsoft in this United States. However, eye injuries with this sport could potentially be very severe. Therefore, safety goggles are an absolute must have! Also, some people have been known to receive injuries such as a chipped tooth from getting a direct hit to the mouth. Therefore, many people like to use face masks which cover your face and mouth while playing Airsoft.

Some models even have the goggles and face mask combined which are especially nice as they offer thorough all-in-one protection. Airsoft tactical vests help protect the body from getting hit directly by an Airsoft BB. Also, they often have pockets that allow you to carry extra guns, BB’s and anything else you might need. Helmets are also great to have as they of course, help protect your head from receiving any direct injuries.

Plus, helmets can make the game even more fun by making it seem more realistic. As far as your regular clothing goes. You’ll want to be sure to wear long pants and long sleeved shirts since they both offer full coverage. Full coverage clothing will help to minimize the impact of getting hit by BB’s.

As far as where to play, U.S. regulations require Airsoft to be played on private property only. A large yard could work well. However, should you decide to play Airsoft in your backyard, be sure to notify your neighbors in advance. This way they’ll know what to expect and you won’t inadvertently frighten them.

Another choice for outdoor play is one of the many specially designed Airsoft fields. Just do a quick search online, and you will most likely be able to find one in your area. There are also indoor facilities across the U.S. that will allow you to play Airsoft. This is great because it allows you to play Airsoft, even during inclement weather. Due to insurance regulations, all indoor Airsoft facilities require the use of a full face mask. This is because they want to make sure they’re protected in the event you end up getting some sort of facial injury.

Thank you for taking the time to read this article. And I hope you’ve found it to be both interesting and informative. I hope you have a great time playing Airsoft! And as always, please be sure to put safety and the law first.