According to the online retailer Ammo.com, sales over the past month of ammunition in the United States have been “massive.”
"While people have stockpiled toilet paper, hand sanitizer, and pantry essentials, they've also purchased ammunition at an unprecedented rate," they say on their site.
Ammunition sales at Ammo.com were up more than 1,000% in Colorado, 945% in Arizona and 897% in Ohio.
Gun sales across the country have also shot up since 16 U.S. states issued “Shelter-in-place” orders.
“We have had about an 800 per cent increase in sales," David Stone, owner of a gun store in Tulsa, Oklahoma told AFP. "I'm getting close to running out. It's fear over coronavirus. I don't understand it myself and I think it's unreasonable."
Larry Hyatt, owner of one of the country’s largest gun shops, Hyatt Guns in Charlotte, North Carolina, told the Guardian newspaper the mass buying at his shop was unprecedented, and that there was a demand for AR-15 semi-automatic assault-style rifles. “This is only the second time in my 61 years of business that we’ve seen anything like this,” he said.
“We are experiencing a massive rush to buy guns and ammunition as people feel the need to protect themselves and their families.”
A Small Arms Survey states an average of 120 weapons for every 100 inhabitants in the U.S. In Europe, the figure is 5 guns per 100 inhabitants.
Reuters has reported a surge in gun purchases in Hungary, citing the Czech arms manufacturers association as saying that “shop owners have reported rising demand and a double-digit increase in sales.”