Legislature Considering a Bill to Arm Firefighters

State lawmakers are considering a new gun-carry bill aimed at firefighters. The bill would allow guns to be carried openly or concealed as long as the firefighter has permission from the local fire department.

AllNews 106.7 is reporting the bill comes nearly a year after an armed gunman held a group of firefighters captive in Gwinnett County.

The firefighters had been responding to an emergency medical call at a house. The firefighters were not injured, and the gunman was later killed by police.

Jerry Henry, with gun rights group Georgia Carry, says he supports it. “I think that everyone who engages in any job, or goes outside of their house, and even in their homes should have the opportunity to protect themselves. I don’t know what makes firefighters different from anybody else.”


  1. Jon Richards says:

    as long as the firefighter has permission from the local fire department.
    Wouldn’t the same constitutional issue that prevented the bill to allow colleges to decide if qualified students could carry on campus prevent this bill from passing?

  2. Michael Silver says:

    This is not a good idea.

    First bad part is the liability exposure. If a department send a fire-fighter out with a pistol and he shoots someone (intentionally or otherwise), the liability will flow back to the department.

    Second bad part is training time and expense. Are the departments going to add firearms training requirements to an already overloaded and expensive training regime, along with periodic qualification. This is going to cost serious money seriously fast.

    Third part is where will the gun be while the fire-fighter is fighting the fire? Is he going to put a holster on his Scott Air Pack? Normally uncontained ammo that cooks off is a harmless loud sound . If the gun gets hot enough, a round in the chamber will cook off and shoot the bullet out of the barrel with velocity. Ouch! What happens when the fire-fighters are doing there job by feel in zero visibility? Will Joey accidentally pull Bobby’s glock out of the holster. (When I was younger I was a volunteer fire-fighter. I did alot of groping of others in the smoke house)

    Fourth, why isn’t PD also present already? I thought protocol was at least one PD unit would respond. Maybe that is a local requirement where I live. If there is trouble, I’d want PD to be there so they can bring their friends with guns.

    I’m all for gun-rights for Citizens but authorizing government employees to carry needs to be carefully reviewed.

  3. The Comma Guy says:

    I agree 100% with Michael’s points and think that they represent a well thought out position. No one wants firefighters to not be safe on their calls. But the last thing that they need to worry about is a gun in the middle of a call.

    I wonder if this is a classic case of a solution in search of a problem. Have the sponsors talked with their local FD, both professional and volunteer, and gotten their input? Or is this just a chance for certain members of the General Assembly to stand up and thump their chests in an election year that they were in favor of firefighters AND guns therefore making them the bestest Republican in the race.

    One other thing, unlike Law Enforcement Officers, you can be a felon and be a firefighter. How will that play if this bill is passed? Would The parole board get pressured to restore firearm privileges to certain convicted felons because they are firefighters?

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