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Old December 31st, 2009, 11:02   #1
Double Tapper
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I saw this posted on the gun forum and thought I would share it here.
Might go nowhere,but you never know.

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To Eli El-Chantiry, chairman of the Ottawa Police Services Board.

Dear Sir,

Citizens of this city and Canadians right across the country are saddened and horrified with the brutal murder of Const. Eric Czapnik. My heart and prayers go out to his family and fellow officers at this sad and tragic time.

I am aware that the robbery charges laid against Constable Czapnik's accused killer relate to a carjacking Monday night, in which a car was taken from a young adult after a pellet gun was waved in his face.

This again reminds us all of the hazards associated with pellet guns and other "toy" firearms. As you are aware, pellet guns are inherently dangerous consumer products. Air and pellet guns are a leading cause of eye loss and eye damage in children and young adults. More than 50 young people are hospitalized each year in Canada as a result of injuries from pellet and air guns.

While firearms legislation does cover guns capable of firing a projectile over 152.4 metres (500 feet) per second, any guns which fire at or below this velocity are available for purchase at many stores. Ballistic tests have shown a pellet fired at 182.88 metres (600 feet) per second is capable of killing an adult or child.

A related safety concern is the use of realistically-looking firearms -- replica or "toy" -- used in criminal activity. The victim at the end of a barrel is in no position to judge if the gun is real or fake. SWAT teams have been mobilized to deal with people wielding toy or replica guns. Any person threatening to shoot is at risk of being shot, and there have been tragic circumstances, including an incident in this area a few years ago. Toy guns and replica guns comprise up to 40% of guns seized by police.

Shockingly, the Hazardous Products Act does not regulate these items, even though stuffed toys are.

These products have wreaked more havoc and injury than many products regulated under that 40-year-old act. Bringing the manufacturer and sale of pellet guns under the authority of this act would provide a measure of safety and an important step in protecting Canadians.

While this challenge and responsibility resides with the federal minister of health, an intervention by your board calling on Minister Aglukkaq to proceed would be most helpful and very much in the public interest. Public health, safety and crime prevention are the issues at hand.

I do hope your board sees fit to act on this recommendation. In this regard, I look forward to hearing from you.



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