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question on carry in Virginia

conandan

Regular Member
Joined
Nov 5, 2012
Messages
236
Location
florida
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.
 

Grapeshot

Legendary Warrior
Joined
May 21, 2006
Messages
35,347
Location
Valhalla
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/news/tractor_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/news/tractor_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-regulations/truck/driver/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-regulations/rules-regulations.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/showthread.php?114886-Are-commercial-drivers-less-able-to-legally-carry&p=1947052#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:

papa bear

Regular Member
Joined
Jul 25, 2010
Messages
2,224
Location
mayberry, nc
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
 

conandan

Regular Member
Joined
Nov 5, 2012
Messages
236
Location
florida
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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