Gun owners in Bundaberg have been part of a massive haul in firearms, with more than 1300 handed in to the central region policing district as part of the National Gun Amnesty.
Gun owners in Bundaberg have been part of a massive haul in firearms, with more than 1300 handed in to the central region policing district as part of the National Gun Amnesty. Claudia Jambor

Firearms taken off our streets

GUN owners in Bundaberg have been part of a massive haul in firearms, with more than 1300 handed in to the central region policing district as part of the National Gun Amnesty.

The district, which combines the Wide Bay Burnett, Capricornia, Mackay and the Sunshine Coast, was top of the list for most guns surrendered between July 1 to September 30.

The northern region's firearm tally was 408 while the Brisbane region surrendered 590 firearms.

Minister for Police, Fire and Emergency Services Mark Ryan and Deputy Commissioner Bob Gee said Queenslanders had handed in more than 16,126 firearms overall for registration, safekeeping or destruction.

Of this total, 6897 firearms have been registered to existing firearm licensees, 174 firearms have been stored for safekeeping, 2974 will be destroyed and 6081 continue to be processed.

Deputy Commissioner Gee said he was pleased with the response.

"This amnesty will help keep our community safe by ensuring those firearms don't fall into the wrong hands,” he said.

"Any firearm in the wrong hands can have tragic consequences.”

Some of the already-processed firearms surrendered included 6528 Category A weapons such as air rifles and shot guns and 2546 Category B weapons including double barrel centre-fire rifles.

Mr Ryan said the success of the amnesty showed Queenslanders were overwhelmingly firm in their backing of strict gun control to keep the community safe.

"The quantity of firearms surrendered has been very positive,” he said. "It has shown Queenslanders want our state to be a safe place.

"Reducing unregistered firearms improves public safety.”

But it hasn't been smooth sailing with some groups.

Last month, One Nation accused Labor of treating farmers like terrorists during a heated debate on farmers' rights to own category H firearms.

One Nation Bundaberg candidate Jane Truscott said on Facebook her party was committed to "taking a fair and balanced approach to firearms ownership”.

"In our region, we know that firearm ownership is a fundamental tool of trade for our farmers,” Dr Truscott said.

"Labor and the LNP clearly do not support or understand the needs of primary producers in regional Queensland.”

More than 390 Category H firearms have been surrendered.



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