Summary: The Consequences Of Exempting Guns From Safety Regulations

The exemption of guns from the federal regulatory safety oversight that applies to other consumer products has many consequences that affect public safety, including the following.

•  There are no manufacturing standards set for guns.

•  There are no requirements that guns have basic safety features.

•  There are no independent pre-market testing requirements at the federal level to assure that guns meet basic safety requirements.

•  There is no central entity to which consumers can make reports about defects.

•  No agency is empowered to obtain or receive information, known to manufacturers, about consumer complaints.

•  No agency has the power to require a recall when public safety is at issue.

•  Recalls are unsupervised and are not advertised according to best practices.

•  There are no content requirements for recall notices.

•  There is no central repository for gun owners to determine if their guns have known safety problems.

•  There is no way to know how effective recalls have been.

•  There is no way to punish manufacturers that don’t play by the rules.

All of these protections are available, for virtually every other consumer product, under the Consumer Product Safety Act.51

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51 15 U.S.C. § 2051, et seq.