Last week, Vermont Governor Peter Shumlin signed H. 570 into law, thereby making suppressor ownership and use legal in Vermont in perpetuity. As you may recall, Gov. Shumlin last year signed H. 5 into law, a bill that made Vermont the 41st state to allow private suppressor ownership. One downside to last year’s H.5 was that it included a sunset provision on the use of suppressors at sport shooting ranges, which H. 570 repealed. So, now that H. 570 has been signed into law, suppressor owners in Vermont no longer need to worry about having their ability to use suppressors at sport shooting ranges taken away by a sunset provision. This is great news for suppressor owners in the Green Mountain State!
The American Suppressor Association would like to thank Rep. Patrick Brennan for his continued advocacy on behalf of your suppressor rights, as well as the Vermont Legislative Sportsmen’s Caucus, without whose efforts this bill could not have become law. We are also very appreciative of Gov. Shumlin for his willingness to sign both H.5 and H. 570.
Although the ASA is very happy with the direction Vermont is in terms of suppressor rights, it remains one of three states where suppressor ownership is legal, but suppressed hunting is not. As such, we will be back in Montpelier next year working on legalizing suppressor hunting in the Green Mountain State.
There are many benefits to using a suppressor, including:
- HEARING PROTECTION: Noise induced hearing loss and tinnitus are two of the most common afflictions for recreational shooters and hunters. Everyone knows that gunfire is loud, but very few people understand the repercussions that shooting can have on their hearing until it’s too late. Suppressors reduce the noise of a gunshot by an average of 20 – 35 dB, which is roughly the same as earplugs or earmuffs. By decreasing the overall sound signature, suppressors help to preserve the hearing of recreational shooters, hunters, and hunting dogs around the world.
- SAFER HUNTING: Most hunters do not wear hearing protection in the field because they want to hear their surroundings. The trouble is, exposure to even a single unsuppressed gunshot can, and often does, lead to permanent hearing damage. Suppressors allow hunters to maintain full situational awareness, while still protecting their hearing. The result is a safer hunting experience for the hunter, and for those nearby.
- NOISE COMPLAINTS: As urban developments advance into rural areas, shooting ranges and hunting preserves across the country are being closed due to noise complaints. Although it can still be heard, suppressed gunfire helps mitigate noise complaints from those who live near shooting ranges and hunting land.
- ACCURACY: Suppressors reduce recoil, and help decrease muzzle flinch. These benefits lead to improved accuracy, better shot placement, and more humane hunts.