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Airsoft and Hawaii Laws

The City and County of Honolulu passed a new law relating to replica guns. Ordinance 03-24 was introduced back in April 2003, and was signed in to law on July 16, 2003 by Mayor Jeremy Harris. This new law came as a result of the increase in calls HPD was responding to regarding people carrying replica guns. The law prohibits the carrying or displaying of a replica gun in a public place or in the presence of a law enforcement officer. A replica gun is any toy or object that bears such a resemblance to an actual firearm that any person would have a hard time distinguishing it from a real firearm. The definition also says the replica gun would lack any feature or aspect that would be a signal to readily distinguish it from an actual firearm by sight.

Most players or collectors of airsoft replica guns may think that the orange colored barrel of a replica gun would be enough to signal that it is not real, but this is not always the case. Depending on the lighting conditions or the way the gun may be held it can be difficult to see the orange markings.

Airsoft Hawaii learned in a discussion with the Honolulu Police Department that police officers should not be put into a position where they might have to question if they are facing a real gun. Their job is stressful enough. When arriving on the scene where a report was made that an individual or individuals were seen carrying weapons, an officer will not want to second guess that the threat they are facing may not be holding a real firearm. These officers donít want to go home knowing that they shot a kid with a fake gun. However, if the threat was real and if an officer took too long to make a decision on whether or not the person is holding a real or fake weapon it could be too late.

If you are caught violating the new law, you could face a fine of up to $1000.00 and a year in jail. Since the new law has passed, there has been one incident in which three arrests were made.

If you collect or play with replica guns, you need to act responsibly. Never play in schools, parks, hiking trails, or any publicly visible area. For a few minutes of fun, it is not worth being arrested, fined and jailed or even shot and killed by the Police.

Where is it legal to play and use airsoft?
It is legal for any person to discharge any airsoft gun on any private parcel of land or residence in such a manner that the BB shot will not traverse any ground or space outside the limits of such parcel of land or residence or in such a manner that persons or property may be endangered.

Where is it illegal to play and use airsoft?
It is illegal for any person under 18 years of age to carry an airsoft gun on the street, alleys, public roads, or public lands unless accompanied by an adult.

It is illegal to carry an airsoft gun on the street, alleys, public roads, or public lands unless it is in a suitable case or securely wrapped.

It is illegal to take an airsoft gun to any school grounds.

It is illegal to brandish an airsoft gun in the presence of a law enforcement officer on duty.

It is illegal for any person to discharge an airsoft gun from or across any street, sidewalk, alley or public land, or any public place except on a properly constructed target range.

It is illegal for any person to discharge any airsoft gun on any private parcel of land or residence in such a manner that the BB shot may reasonably be expected to traverse any ground or space outside the limits of such parcel of land or residence or in such a manner that persons or property may be endangered.

It is illegal for any person to discharge any air gun in such a manner or under such circumstances that persons or property may be endangered.