(Update: This bill was re-introduced and renamed the Interstate Transport Act (ITA) to avoid confusion with another bill not associated with AKTI. Please check for the most current information.)
Knife owners would be protected while traveling with their knives in the U.S.
The U.S. Senate Bill 1315 and also referred to as “Knife Owners’ Protection Act,”, is an important key to protecting everyone who travels with knives. The burden on knife users of trying to know, understand and comply with several states’ laws will be replaced by these reasonable regulations:
- Knife users may transport their knives by normal travel including overnight stops, common carrier misrouting or delays, and other emergency or normal stops related to a journey through states (provided there is no intent to commit a punishable offense);
- Knives may not be directly accessible from the passenger compartment of the motor vehicle. If there is no compartment separate from the passenger compartment, then the knife must be in a closed container, glove compartment or console;
- If transported other than by motor vehicle, a knife must be in a closed container;
- An individual may carry an emergency knife or tool that has a blunt tipped safety blade or guarded blade, or both, for cutting seat belts. That type of knife or tool does not need to be locked;
- KOPA does not apply to the transport of a knife in an aircraft where passengers are subject to screening by TSA.
“AKTI greatly appreciates the hard work and leadership of Senators Enzi and Wyden on this issue and this legislation,” said CJ Buck, AKTI Legislative Chair. “Their commitment to a commonsense solution has been tremendous. We look forward to continuing to work with Senators Enzi and Wyden as KOPA makes its way through the Congress and thank them for listening to our suggestions to improve on the bill offered last year.”
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Why Do We Need To Protect Traveling Knife Owners?
- There is a confusing, frequently changing patchwork of knife laws across the U.S. In additional to each of the 50 states having their own laws regarding knives, there are many local laws and regulations within several states who do not have statewide knife uniformity laws.
- A knife legal in one location may have serious criminal consequences in another location.
- Even within legal jurisdictions enforcement can be inconsistent and cause law-abiding citizens problems.
Why is the Bill Also Called the “Knife Owners’ Protection Act (KOPA”?
- The concept for the bill is based on existing law for firearms owners to protect them from inconsistent laws throughout the country.
- The Firearms Owners’ Protection Act (FOPA) was passed in 1986 18 USC 926A
- Both acts provide protection for owners if possession of their item was lawful in the place or State where they begin travel AND is lawful at their destination place.
What Does a Knife Owner Need to Know If This Act Becomes Law?
- Knives must be secured in a locked container, glove compartment or console.
- Emergency knives or tools Do NOT have to be in a CLOSED container
- Must incorporate a blunt tipped safety blade and/or guarded blade
- State laws do NOT change
- Your knives must be legal in the state you begin your travel AND at your destination.
- Travel does not apply to commercial air travel – You must comply with TSA regulations regarding knives and put them in your checked luggage.
- If you are arrested, and in compliance with the Act, you have the right to receive reasonable attorney’s fees.
- There is no protection for anyone involved in criminal activity or with the intent to commit a crime.