Gun Ranges Adapt For COVID-19 World

Gun Ranges Adapt For COVID-19 World

All over the country, a lot of people are in a tough spot. Their businesses are shut down because they’re not deemed “essential.” I get the thinking behind the order, of course. Minimizing the places people can go also minimizes the places sick people might transmit COVID-19. In theory, that reduces the chances for infection.

Unfortunately, if it’s your business, that’s only likely to go so far in making you feel better about your life’s work going down the toilet.

Luckily, some businesses are finding ways to work in the COVID-19 world. That includes some gun ranges, apparently.

With businesses having to shut their doors because of coronavirus, local gun ranges remain open.

“I’d much rather be worried about the people and my employees,” said Fowler Firearms manager Jon Dezendorf.

Dezendorf has been the manager at Fowler Firearms in Fort Myers for a decade and said he and his employees are taking precautions they never have before because of coronavirus.

“We are wiping our guns down with Lysol, we haven’t done that before,” said Dezendorf. “We wipe them down all the time but generally with a gun wipe. Now I’m using something with bleach in it so it kills the bacteria.”

Dezendorf said since the start of the pandemic business has been good, though.

“It spiked up but now it’s slowing down which it should be because people are staying at home like they’re supposed to,” he said.

They’re also controlling the number of people on the range at a given time, likely also enforcing social distancing as an additional layer of safety.

Honestly, this is a good thing that I’d like to see more ranges begin to implement if they’re not already. The truth of the matter is that COVID-19 is here, it’s real, and it’s nasty.

Gun stores and their accompanying ranges are essential businesses, to be sure. Yet that status as “essential” isn’t a magic talisman that protects anyone from the virus. Precautions need to be taken. Dezendorf is doing the right thing by cleaning guns of more than just fingerprints preventing rust. He’s doing things that every gun store should be doing right now.

More importantly, though, he’s doing it without the government hovering over him, demanding him to take certain steps.

While I get the idea behind these lockdowns–I live in a city with a major outbreak where people are still ignoring the shelter-in-place order, so no, not everyone will exercise good judgment without requirements they do so–it’s also true that a lot of businesses are more than willing to take steps to protect their staff and customers. They don’t need to be required by the government to do so.

The question then becomes, how many would do so?

I honestly don’t know. The gun world isn’t like the rest of the world, to be honest. Gun stores are one of the few places where people can come in and hang out from time to time and check out what’s new without dropping money every time they walk in and no one really thinks much about it. They develop a relationship few other businesses have with their customers.

But the rest of the gun world should follow Dezendorf’s lead if they’re not doing it already.