Gun and ammo shortage continues to plague retailers

Published: Sep. 15, 2020 at 5:58 PM EDT
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BANGOR, Maine (WABI) -“As far as the guns go, I’m at a loss.”

Byron Dill, owner of Dill’s Outdoors in Bangor, says he’s seen a steady stream of customers coming in looking for guns and ammunition.

“They’re going to have to buy what they can find instead of what they want maybe.”

He has both guns and ammo, but variety and quantity is sparse.

“It’s tough to get the product that people want.”

Fear surrounding the pandemic and civil unrest have driven demand up while manufacturers are struggling.

“That combined with it being an election year.”

Indian Hill Trading Post owner Craig Watt says they usually see sales spike during presidental election years.

“It’s been a little bit of everything for us. Hand guns, we certainly have sold more hand guns this year than we normally do.”

According to FBI data, there have already been 10,000 more background checks for handgun sales so far this year in Maine than all of last year with similar increases for other firearms.

Those numbers don’t necessarily represent sales, but retailers are struggling to keep stock.

“We have feelers out everywhere to purchase guns as they become available.” says Watt.

Dill says he started buying used guns for resale, which are quickly snapped up by eager customers.

“As soon as they come in, I try to look to see if there’s anything available. Nine times out of ten, no, it’s just not there.”

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