New Jersey’s top cop recently announced the Garden State taken a major step forward by defining the features of smart guns to be made available for sale in New Jersey, the first of its kind in the U.S.
According to a statement from Attorney General Matt Platkin, the state’s Personalized Handgun Authorization Commission (PHAC) has taken the lead in identifying and defining major safety features attributed to smart guns available for sale within New Jersey.
The AG’s announcement further stipulates that firearm manufacturers seeking to be added to the state’s personalized handgun roster must demonstrate their handguns have reliable personalization technology, features to avoid accidental discharge or damage, and must comply with all state and federal laws.
Platkin emphasized that the new safety standards embraced by the state is a milestone in New Jersey’s first-in-the-nation efforts to improve public safety in the use of firearms by encouraging gun manufacturers to develop safer more efficient firearms that could prevent unauthorized accidental discharge of a weapon by individuals.
Reducing Accidental Shooting
According to a recent study just released in June by Injury Epidemiology found that a majority of children who die from gunshot wounds are caused by accidental shootings while playing with a loaded weapon.
Authorities said the new technology will cut down on gun violence that often is the result of an individual gaining access to someone else’s gun.
“These can be criminals, or people in crisis, or young children who do not understand that they are not playing with a toy. We know the effects of these repeated tragedies far too painfully in New Jersey and they must end,” said Platkin. “The actions that we announce are the result of extensive conversations among the commissioners and are another important step in New Jersey’s comprehensive efforts to make New Jersey a leader in gun safety.”
The scientific journal also found that more than 90% of those accidental shootings were the results of a handgun being left unattended, unsecured and loaded within the easy reach of a child.
Even more concerning, the report found that approximately 64% of those accidental gunshot deaths happen at the victim’s home, and in nearly every incident the gun belongs to a relative.
Parents often believe that their child knows not to pick up a firearm if they find one or mistakenly believe their child can differentiate between real firearms and toy firearms,” but data suggests “that children continue to die from injuries sustained while playing with firearms or mistaking real firearms for toys.”
PHAC was signed into law in 2019, which required New Jersey gun dealers to provide to its customers with at least one gun for sale within its inventory approved by the state’s personalized handgun roster. Gun safety advocates say that under the law, PHAC is fostering an environment for manufactures of handguns to produce and make available for sale smart guns.
Under its new guidelines, PHAC will evaluate applications from New Jersey gun dealers to be included within its roster.
Gun dealers, however, must meet high performance standards established by PHAC, along with testing methods that will establish an overall grade for both gun dealers and manufacturers seeking inclusion within the personalized handgun roster.