Sales of guns and ammunition are soaring across the United States amidst the coronavirus outbreak, which has infected over 182,870 in the world and has killed 7,174 people.
On the west coast, long lines of customers were seen outside gun stores to stock as the government of the United States is starting to place a nation-wide emergency.
It is reported that the Martin B Retting Gun Shop in Culver City, California, had long lines that stretched around the block throughout the entire weekend.
A customer that was in line told the LA Times, “Politicians and anti-gun people have been telling us for the longest time that we don’t need guns. But right now, a lot of people are truly scared, and they can make that decision themselves.”
Larry Hyatt, the owner of one of the largest gun shops in the US – Hyatt Guns in Charlotte, North Carolina- said that the scenes of mass buying at his store were “virtually unprecedented”.
Talking about the number of people appearing in his shop, Hyatt said, “This is only the second time in my 61 years of business that we’ve seen anything like this.”
Larry Hyatt said that the first occasion was the aftermath of the mass shooting at Sandy Hook elementary school in Connecticut in 2012.
He said, “We are experiencing a massive rush to buy guns and ammunition as people feel the need to protect themselves and their families.”
Hyatt said that the type of guns that were being bought was reflective of the fear prevalent amongst the customers.
According to reports, there is no interest in buying hunting rifles, but instead, people are buying target guns.
AR-15 semi-automatic assault-style rifles are currently on the high demand.
When Larry Hyatt was asked why he thought sales for guns were increasing, Hyatt said, “Financial meltdown, pandemic, crime, politics … you throw it all into the pot, and you have one hell of a mess.”
Not only in local shops, but online dealers are also reporting the same thing.
Ammo.com, a major online dealer of ammunition, has put out figures for sales from February 23, 2020 to March 4, 2020, and the numbers show how much people are buying guns.
In the 11 day span, ammunition sales increased sales by 68 percent compared to the previous 11 days.
Alex Horsman, the marketing manager of Ammo.com, released a statement about the incident.
Alex said, “We know certain things impact ammo sales, mostly political events or economic instability when people feel their rights may end up infringed. This is our first experience with a virus leading to such a boost in sales.”
As of writing this blog, the coronavirus has infected 182,995 people all over the world and has caused the deaths of 7,174 people.
According to worldometers.info, 79,890 people have recovered from the deadly virus.
In the United States of America, there have been 4,733 confirmed cases of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19).
The government of the USA has confirmed the deaths of 93 people.