ammo

Ammo shortages follow as gun-control debate continues

by Henry Pierson Curtis, Orlando Sentinel  |  published on February 26, 2013

Ammunition sells out almost as fast as it hits the shelves these days at Walmart on 13th Street and other national chain stores across Central Florida.

The rush to buy guns and ammo soared within days of the Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre in December, and it has not abated. It comes after a lesser surge in the fall over fears gun-control legislation would follow if President Barack Obama won re-election.

The current shortages are spurred both by veteran shooters and first-time buyers, as well as investors, all trying to buy assault rifles, handguns, high-capacity magazines and stocks of ammunition they fear might be banned, said gun dealers in Orange, Osceola, Lake and Seminole counties.

The most popular calibers are still available at small shops, but in restricted amounts and at higher prices.

“It’s about keeping all my customers happy,” said Neal Crasnow, who runs Al’s Army Navy stores in Orlando, Altamonte Springs and Sanford and limits ammunition sales to keep hoarders from wiping out his stocks. “I’ve got $60,000 to $80,000 on back order, and I don’t know when I’ll get it.”

Most in demand is ammunition for AR-15 and AK-47 assault rifles and a wide range of .38 Special, .380-caliber, 9 mm and .45-caliber handgun ammunition. Unlike similar shortages after Obama’s 2008 election, this year’s run on ammunition includes the .22-caliber long-rifle cartridge that was often the first caliber rifle that American shooters learned to shoot.

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