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Thread: question on carry in Virginia

  1. #1
    Regular Member conandan's Avatar
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    question on carry in Virginia

    I have been told by several officers both state and county that you can't have a firearm in your truck. And if caught I would be subject to arrest. I have read the Virginia laws on vehicle carry and the only thing I see is that they use the term private vehicle or vessel. Now I own my truck and by my understanding that makes it privately owned. I have a ccl that is honored by Virginia buy according to those I've spoke to that doesn't seem to matter in a truck. Does anyone have any experience with this that could give me some advice.

    Also was told that by carrying in my truck I violate fedral law for carrying on federal property when I drive thru a weight station. I have always thought weight stations were state property and the roads and parking were public , you just can't carry in the building.
    I have oced in Virginia when out of the truck with no issues.

  2. #2
    Moderator / Administrator Grapeshot's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by conandan View Post
    I have been told by several officers both state and county that you can't have a firearm in your truck. And if caught I would be subject to arrest. I have read the Virginia laws on vehicle carry and the only thing I see is that they use the term private vehicle or vessel. Now I own my truck and by my understanding that makes it privately owned. I have a ccl that is honored by Virginia buy according to those I've spoke to that doesn't seem to matter in a truck. Does anyone have any experience with this that could give me some advice.

    Also was told that by carrying in my truck I violate fedral law for carrying on federal property when I drive thru a weight station. I have always thought weight stations were state property and the roads and parking were public , you just can't carry in the building.
    I have oced in Virginia when out of the truck with no issues.
    Will try to answer all of your questions - will be long read if you follow all of the links - I do recommend that you do so - trust, but confirm........for yourself.

    1) General references
    a) Don't use the term "weight stations" - they were defined as weigh stations, but now are officially titled as Motor Carrier Service Centers.
    https://www.dmv.virginia.gov/general...r_trailers.asp

    b) Regarding your truck: you may privately own it, but so do commercial trucking businesses privately own their company trucks. What determines a "commercial vehicle" is the VDOT definition seen in the following link - your vehicle is a commercial vehicle.
    http://www.dmv.state.va.us/drivers/#whatiscdl.asp

    2) Virginia Law
    Don't ask a LEO or accept a LEO's word on what the law is. In this case (firearm in your truck/commercial vehicle), there is no statute in the Code of Virginia that says you cannot. The absence of a law saying that it is illegal leaves such by default to be legal.

    Use Code of Virginia search box, top right of page
    http://vacode.org/

    3) In support of Virginia state law

    a) DMV is responsible for administering Virginia's weigh stations. For more information, contact DMV's Motor Carrier Services Division at 804-249-5130. (DMV in this case refers to the Virginia Dept. of Motor Vehicles)
    http://www.virginiadot.org/info/trucking-main.asp

    b) Inspectors from the Department of Motor Vehicles were transferred to the Department of State Police and received training at the State Police Academy. After 12 weeks of instruction and graduation, Weight Enforcement Officers were assigned to the 11 weigh stations across the state for the purpose of enforcing commercial vehicle laws - 1982
    http://www.vsp.state.va.us/history.shtm

    c) The title of Weight Enforcement Officer was changed to Commercial Vehicle Enforcement Officer - 1993
    http://www.vsp.state.va.us/history.shtm

    d) Commercial Vehicle Enforcement Officers (Va State Police) working at weigh stations, also called Motor Carrier Service Centers, make sure that trucks comply with state and federal rules.
    https://www.dmv.virginia.gov/general...r_trailers.asp

    4) Federal Law
    There is no federal law restricting guns in commercial vehicles. Again, the absence of a law leaves the de facto result of not being illegal. Motor Carrier Safety Improvement Act of 1999 - Public Law 106-159 (113 Stat. 1748) creating the new Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration who is responsible for overseeing motor carrier and driving laws.
    http://www.fmcsa.dot.gov/rules-regul...river/laws.htm

    Repeat - there is no rule from FMCSA (Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration) making carry of a gun in a commercial vehicle illegal.
    http://www.fmcsa.dot.gov/rules-regul...egulations.htm

    5) Carry permits
    a) If the state that issued your CCL is covered under reciprocity with or by recognition in Virginia your permit is legal in Virginia.http://www.vsp.state.va.us/Firearms_Reciprocity.shtm

    b) Note that you do not need a permit to OC (open carry) in Virginia, including in your truck.Refer to 18.2-279 to 18.2-311.2. The Code of Virginia may be searched at http://leg1.state.va.us/000/src.htm.

    6) Sample Experience
    You should reread post #10 in the following link - you posted to that thread so should have read his reply.
    http://forum.opencarry.org/forums/sh...52#post1947052

    7) Conclusion
    It is not illegal to carry in a commercial vehicle in Virginia; however, an employer may have rules against the practice for company drivers and contractors + there will still be places that guns are not permitted i.e military installations.

    More than you wanted? Surely not more than you need.
    Last edited by Grapeshot; 06-07-2013 at 03:10 PM. Reason: formatting and spelling
    You will not rise to the occasion; you will fall back on your level of training. Archilochus, 650 BC

    Old and treacherous will beat young and skilled every time. Yata hey.

  3. #3
    Regular Member papa bear's Avatar
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    Thanks to grapeshot for his great research on the subject. please review all the laws he posted

    but to summarize, the laws that apply to your private vehicle applies to the commercial vehicle in VA.
    some other states are different. so be sure to research their laws too. NC is also one where the laws are the same as VA
    Luke 22:36 ; 36Then said he unto them, But now, he that hath a purse, let him take it, and likewise his scrip: and he that hath no sword, let him sell his garment, and buy one.

    "guns are like a Parachute, if you don't have one when you need it, you will not need one again"
    - unknown

    i you call a CHP a CCW then you are really stupid. period.

  4. #4
    Regular Member conandan's Avatar
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    Looks like I will have a lot of homework tonight lol. Thank you for all the info I will look it all over.

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