Gun stores across King County are experiencing a run on ammunition. File photo

Gun stores across King County are experiencing a run on ammunition. File photo

Buyers want bullets, not just toilet paper

Gun owners are flocking to stores to buy ammunition.

Gun stores across King County are experiencing a run on ammunition, as customers flock to the stores amid the COVID-19 outbreak.

On Monday afternoon, gun stores were flooded with customers. Several across King County were contacted for this story, and those that answered confirmed high volumes of customers. One employee at LowPriceGuns in Bellevue told this reporter to “call back in 2021.”

And it’s not just happening here. The Associated Press reported that ammo sales have increased in recent days, with customers buying more guns and ammunition.

An employee at Work-Sports & Outdoor in Enumclaw said people have been buying large amounts of ammunition since at least last week. They said two separate customers had each bought around $3,000. Freeze-dried food, toilet paper and work clothes have also been hot commodities. However, the store has another order in for ammunition, and there’s been no disruptions in the supply chain so far.

Several major online ammunition retailers were also sold out of .223 Remington, a popular sporting round for rifles like the AR-15. However, larger quantities costing thousands of dollars were still available.

It’s not the first time there’s been a run on ammunition. During the Obama years, online rumors whipped some gun owners into a buying frenzy, which created a national shortage of many popular rounds.

The current round of buying comes amid much different circumstances as the country tries to get a handle on the COVID-19 outbreak. Orders from Washington state Gov. Jay Inslee, as well as local officials, has shut down bars, many restaurants and many other workplaces in an attempt to stop the spread of the virus.

It is unknown how long these restrictions could be enacted, but President Trump said Monday that the epidemic could stretch into July or August nationwide. Locally, King County Executive Dow Constantine also said Monday that hospitals are expected to see cases peak between six to eight weeks.


In consideration of how we voice our opinions in the modern world, we’ve closed comments on our websites. We value the opinions of our readers and we encourage you to keep the conversation going.

Please feel free to share your story tips by emailing editor@bellevuereporter.com.

To share your opinion for publication, submit a letter through our website https://www.bellevuereporter.com/submit-letter/. Include your name, address and daytime phone number. (We’ll only publish your name and hometown.) We reserve the right to edit letters, but if you keep yours to 300 words or less, we won’t ask you to shorten it.

More in News

Washington State Supreme Court Justices (back row, L-R) Raquel Montoya-Lewis, Sheryl Gordon McCloud, Mary I. Yu, G. Helen Whitener, (front row, L-R) Susan Owens, Charles W. Johnson, Steven C. Gonzalez, Barbara A. Madsen and Debra L. Stephens.
Justices strike down Washington state drug possession law

Police must stop arresting people for simple possession.

In Phase 2 of Gov. Jay Inslee’s reopening plan, which was announced Jan. 28, restaurants can reopen at a maximum 25% capacity and a limit of six people per table. Inslee recently announced all counties will be staying in Phase 2 of the state’s reopening plan for the next several weeks. Pictured: People enjoy outdoor dining last summer in downtown Kent. Courtesy photo
Inslee: All of Washington to stay in Phase 2 for a few weeks

The governor issued a weekslong pause on regions moving backward, but has yet to outline a Phase 3.

Entrance to the Tukwila Library branch of the King County Library System. File photo
King County libraries will reopen in some cities for in-person services

Fall City, Kent libraries among six selected for partial reopening.

Mock-up of the future Dick’s Drive-In (photo credit: Dick’s Drive-in)
New Dick’s Drive-In location announced for Bellevue

The famous Seattle hamburger company said they used customer input to decide new location.

In a zipper merge, cars continue in their lanes and then take turns at the point where the lanes meet. (Koenb via Wikimedia Commons)
Do Washington drivers need to learn the zipper merge?

Legislators propose requiring zipper merge instruction in drivers education and in license test.

Pan-fried wontons with chili and spicy garlic sauces (photo credit: Dough Zone Dumpling House)
New Chinese dumpling house to open in downtown Bellevue

Dough Zone menu to feature soup dumplings and pan-fried wontons.

A South King Fire & Rescue firefighter places a used test swab into a secure COVID test vial on Nov. 18, 2020, at a Federal Way testing site. (Sound Publishing file photo)
Masks are still king in combating new COVID strains

A top UW doctor talks new strains, masks and when normal could return.

Washington State Capitol Building in Olympia. File photo
Democrats look to allow noncitizens to serve on school boards

A Senate bill takes aim at a state law requiring anyone seeking elected office to be a citizen.

A CVS pharmacist prepares a COVID-19 vaccine at Village Green Retirement Campus in Federal Way on Jan. 26. Olivia Sullivan/Sound Publishing
State health leader: We have a plan, we don’t have the supply

Two months after the COVID vaccine landed in Washington, many still struggle to secure their shots.

Most Read