BERKELEY (CBS SF) – Gun-related injuries and deaths in parts of California spike in the weeks after gun shows in neighboring Nevada, according to a new University of California, Berkeley study.
According to a university statement, the results show a nearly 70 percent increase in deaths and injuries from firearms in California communities within convenient driving distance of Nevada gun shows.
Researchers studied 275 gun shows in Nevada, mostly in Las Vegas and Reno, between 2005 and 2013. The study also looked at 640 gun shows held in California during the same timeframe.
In the two weeks after the Nevada shows, researchers found firearm injury rates increased from 0.67 per 100,000 people to 1.14 per 100,000 in areas within a two-hour drive of a show. Researchers said the increase translates to 30 more deaths or injuries from firearms.
For the California shows, researchers found no such rise in firearm injuries and deaths in the weeks after a show.
“Our study suggests that California’s strict regulations — on firearms, generally, and on gun shows, specifically — may be effective in preventing short-term increases in firearm deaths and injuries following gun shows,” said Elicott Matthay, a PhD student at the UC Berkeley School of Public Health and the study’s lead author.
California law requires all firearm sales and transfers, including those at gun shows, to go through a background check and a 10-day waiting period.
Nevada, like most states, does not require background checks for sales between private parties, including those at gun shows. In 2016, voters in the Silver State approved background checks for such sales, but the state attorney general has put enforcement on hold.
The study is published in the journal Annals of Internal Medicine.