Ammunition shortage causing some police departments to cut back on usage in training
BYRAM, Miss. (WLBT) - A shortage of ammunition is not only causing customers to see higher prices, but also forcing some police departments to adjust their training practices.
Byram Chief of Police David Errington said his department has ammo in stock but has had to cut back on its usage.
“As far as how often and how much we’re actually using on the range, we are being more conservative with our ammunition and managing it a little differently than we were in years past,” Errington said.
He said the quality and benefit of the training is the same, but the training itself looks a little different.
“Malfunction drills, weapon retention, and we’ll dry fire,” Errington said. “You don’t necessarily have to fire a bullet to train on how to use your pistol.”
The CEO of Two Gun Tactical, John White, said before the pandemic, he could go online and buy as much ammo as he wanted. But that’s no longer the case, which is partially due to supply and demand.
“Statistics say there were 8,000 new gun owners last year. The FBI says 20,000,” White said. “Just by those people buying one box or two boxes puts a shortage on everybody else.”
The shortage is also due to the pandemic itself.
“People that are making the components that go in the ammunition were shut down as well as people stocking up and buying extra ammunition for themselves,” White said.
He said customers have seen higher prices as a result of the shortage.
“We used to buy nine millimeters at 16 cents a round,” White said. “We’re paying 50 and 60 cents a round now from distributors.
He also said ordering ammo takes a lot more patience these days.
“It has been more of one of us sitting on the computer waiting for it to come through and really searching where to find it, who has it, and who has it in bulk to get it here,” White said.
The same goes for Errington who said he’s still waiting on a shipment he placed 5 months ago.
“We ordered a little over $3,500, and today we have only received $1,800 of the order.”
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