Ammunition shortage hits northern Nevada

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Updated: 4/14/2014 6:06 pm
RENO, Nev. ( & KRNV) -- A specific type of ammunition is getting tough to find here in northern Nevada, and officials say hoarding is the reason for the shortage.

A box of .22-caliber bullets is not easy to find, even though manufacturers are not slowing down production. Manufacturers are making .22-caliber bullets at a high rate.

However, the demand is even higher. "They're producing billions of rounds every week, it's just, you know, gone," said Jay Hawkins.

Jay Hawkins is the Training Manager at Reno's U.S. Firearms Academy. The store received five cases of .22-calibers last week, and sold out in two hours. "It's always been a popular round here; it's just more popular now."

The ammunition is popular for training, because it is inexpensive and reliable. Hawkins said gun owners began hoarding 22's a year ago, thanks to government regulation conspiracies. Now, he says people are buying more and shooting less. "Because the fear of it not being available, the demand has just gone through the roof."

"For the past year, this country has been in the toughest shortage of ammunition it's ever been in," said Jim Harwin.

Safe Shot Indoor Shooting Range sees the demand and matches it. Harwin is the General Manager, and said distributors prioritize indoor ranges over retail stores. "We don't have a limit, it's not limited to two or three or four boxes. If you want to come in and buy twenty, thirty boxes, you are welcome to buy it."

Safe Shot is the only indoor range in Reno. The store sells 200 to 300 boxes of .22-caliber ammunition every day, with plenty in stock for the next.

"Because of our range and the amount of ammunition that we purchase on a weekly basis, that our distributors and our ammunition providers are providing us with a very fair amount of .22."

To put this shortage into perspective, we made calls to Sportsman's Warehouse here in Reno, Cabela's in Verdi and Scheels in Sparks. Between all three retailers, not a single box of .22-caliber ammunition is available for purchase.
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nubgnngs42 - 4/16/2014 7:34 AM
0 Votes
Just shows which precious metal to invest in. LEAD. It'll save your life when the all else goes down the tubes. I already have my large stock all nicely bonded in copper jackets, held firmly in a brass tube support by a dash of gunpowder.

burton40 - 4/15/2014 9:09 AM
1 Vote
I've bought 15,000 rds since March 1st. What shortage? I have plenty to sell you on Gunbroker and keep some for myself.

Ckh88 - 4/14/2014 9:20 PM
0 Votes
It's sort of funny. As a former sales associate at a large retailer of ammunition in Northern Nevada I'll say this right now: It's us, the sportsman, buying the ammunition. The government has its own plants for producing military and LE ammunition (though there are plenty of other contractors that work for them, let's not forget that) but the massive rise in firearms sales coupled with new enthusiasm for sport shooting has made us all deal with the horrors of a lot of demand and not much supply. Tooling up ammunition production, especially rimfire, is exceptionally expensive and with a forcasted drop in demand in the next few years it's not necessarily in their best interest to tool up for more production of calibers that may or may not be as desirable in just a few years time. It's a national shortage that's been around since people began buying up large stocks of firearms and ammunition since fears began to spike about new legislation. Soon enough we can hope it'll improve.

DeeR1 - 4/14/2014 6:44 PM
0 Votes
Maybe they should ask the Obama Administration WHY they are buying up LOTS OF AMMO... Ask the BLM, DHS, HHS, SOC. SECURITY...??????????????? It's even hard to find a box of .22 ammo in CA... Getting ready for a Civil REVOLT, maybe.. They know the AMERICAN PATRIOTS are FED UP with GOVT. intrusion...

Larry - 4/14/2014 5:55 PM
0 Votes
You are wrong KRNV!! .22 has been hard to find for the last year and is STARTING to come back because people are getting stocked up and not buying and hoarding or flipping. You are about a year to late with this news.

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