21st SFS reminds Team Pete of local firearms rules

  • Published
  • By By Tim Omdal, 21st Security Forces Squadron deputy commander
  • 21st Space Wing

Recently, a loaded weapon was found on base. The 21st Security Forces Squadron received a call from a concerned citizen who saw someone armed entering the Base Exchange here at Peterson Air Force Base, Colorado. The incident was resolved quickly and quietly. The individual simply forgot he was carrying a weapon.

It is imperative everyone understands the rules and regulations for the transport, storage and carrying of privately owned firearms on the installation. Though federal and state laws may authorize many freedoms in regard to firearms, the possession and transport of firearms on Peterson Air Force Base is strictly limited and enforced by the commander of the 21st Space Wing.

There are many governing guidelines on the topic; however, Air Force Instruction 31-101, Integrated Defense, is the primary authority. Failure to comply with this instruction and governing laws and instructions may subject the offender to apprehension or arrest by appropriate authorities, and punishments may include fines and jail time. Additionally, firearm rules and regulations apply to BB guns and air rifles as well.

First and foremost, the concealed carry of privately owned firearms on Peterson AFB, unless authority has been granted by the 21st SW commander, is prohibited. This applies even if one is otherwise authorized to carry concealed in other jurisdictions. Additionally, the possession of privately owned firearms and ammunition in work centers, common areas, dormitory living quarters or temporary lodging facilities is prohibited. Temporary lodging facilities include visiting airman and officer quarters, temporary lodging facilities and billeting.

Requirements for storage vary, based on your location of residence.

Housing residents:  All housing residents must register their firearms within 72 hours of arrival or purchase/possession. Required documentation, i.e., AF Form 1314, Firearms Registration, and the DD Form 2760, Qualification to Possess Firearms or Ammunition, may be picked up from the 21st Security Forces Squadron armory, or retrieved from the internet and returned to the armory once completed. Information required includes the firearm's make, model, serial number, caliber and gauge. Once a privately owned firearm or ammunition has been approved and registered, it may be stored in housing. Personnel must ensure the firearm is stored in the housing unit in an appropriately constructed, locked container or equipped with a tamper resistant mechanical lock or other safety device. 

Dormitory, Visiting Quarters, and TLF Residents:  Residents are required to store their firearms in the 21st SFS armory. Required documentation, i.e., AF Form 1314 and the DD Form 2760 may be picked up from the armory, or retrieved from the internet and returned to the armory. Information required includes the firearm's make, model, serial number, caliber, and gauge. Because these firearms must be stored in the 21st SFS armory, additional paperwork is required in order to document the firearm's condition. Privately owned firearms are prohibited from the dormitories, TLF, and VQ at all times, regardless of whether the firearm is loaded or unloaded. 

Transport:  When entering the installation, personnel must notify the entry controller when they are in possession of a privately owned firearm or ammunition. Transporting privately owned firearms and ammunition on the installation is prohibited, except to and from authorized storage or shooting areas. Firearms and ammunition may only be transported directly to the 21st SFS armory, or their owner's residence in base family housing. As a reminder, no firearms or ammunition may be present in any temporary living quarter or dormitory.

Privately owned firearms may not be transported in any manner so as to be considered "concealed," such as under the seat or partially hidden. The firearm must be unloaded and in the trunk of the vehicle. The weapon must be cleared and safe, with the breech open. Additionally, we recommend an additional safety device such as a tamper-resistant mechanical lock. Ammunition must be transported in a separate compartment or container. 

The firearm will not be left unattended at any time, and must be under the supervision of an adult, 18 years of age or older, who is not otherwise prohibited from possessing a firearm. In the event the vehicle transporting the weapon does not have a trunk, e.g., Jeep, truck, etc, the weapon must be unloaded, out of arm's reach, and within a locked container or secured with a key-activated trigger lock. Finally, the transport of firearms on a bicycle, motorcycle, or any other two or three-wheeled vehicle is prohibited.

The 21st SFS armory is manned 24 hours a day, every day of the year. For more information, contact (719) 556-7066.