Canada border agency starts campaign to remind U.S. of gun laws here
You're more than welcome to visit Canada, but for goodness sake, leave your guns at home.
That's the message from the Canada Border Services Agency on Monday as it launched a firearms awareness campaign, reminding U.S. travellers coming to Canada that their northern neighbour's firearms laws are strict.
Canadian laws are different than U.S. ones, the agency reiterated in a news release.
The CBSA says most firearms seized at land border crossings are from U.S. travellers seeking entry to Canada.
- Canadian border agents nabbed Americans trying to get guns into Canada, CBSA says
- Detroit man jailed for dropping handgun at Canadian border
As such, the CBSA suggests Americans check the laws before arriving at a Canadian port of entry.
"It is strongly recommended that you not carry your firearm when travelling to Canada and/or transiting through Canada to reach another U.S. destination," the news release reads. "However, should you choose to travel with your firearms, you must declare all firearms in your possession at the first Canadian designated port of entry.
"You must also have all the necessary permits and have your firearm appropriately stored."
Failure to declare any firearm may lead to the seizure of the weapon, a penalty or prosecution in a court of law and may make the person inadmissible to Canada.
A U.S. citizen's vehicle may also be seized and the owner will have to pay a penalty to get it back.
"We welcome our U.S. neighbours in Canada [and] to make your journey more pleasant, travel light and always remember to declare all goods with you," the news release says.
The CBSA says firearms are high-risk commodities and enforcement of firearms laws at the border "is an enforcement priority for Canada."
Earlier this year, the border service agency reported seizing 163 firearms during 115 incidents from travellers crossing the border into Canada through just Windsor, Sarnia, Fort Erie, Niagara Falls and London, Ont. – which is the site of an international airport – in the final six months of 2015.
The 59 firearms seized at the Ambassador Bridge, which connects Windsor, Ont., to Detroit, is almost double the next highest crossing. That's at Fort Erie, Ont. where 31 firearms were seized.
The CBSA reported seizing 59 guns and 121 prohibited weapons at the Ambassador Bridge between July and December last year.