Slingshot laws in Queensland

I thought I’d do a bit of research to find out exactly where we stand with regards to slingshots in Queensland. Basically, as far as carriage and use, they’re treated very similarly to firearms. As with knives, self defense is specifically stated as not being a valid reason/excuse for carrying.

First of all, getting them. Customs prohibits the import of slingshots which feature a forearm brace, but any others they let through.

On possessing slingshots, this is governed by state law. The Queensland Weapons Categories Regulation 1997 makes no mention of slingshots or similar devices falling under any category. The Queensland Weapons Act 1990 does make several mentions of slingshots, mainly to do with lawful possession and use. A summary:

  • Must not discharge a slingshot on private land without the owner’s permission
  • Must not possess/carry a slingshot on private land without the owner’s permission, unless it has been disassembled and cannot be readily discharged
  • Must not carry a slingshot in exposed view in a public place
  • Must not carry a slingshot capable of being discharged in a public place
  • Must not discharge a slingshot in, into, over, towards or through a public place
  • Must not engage in conduct that will cause injury/death, damage to property or alarm to another person.
  • Must not possess or use a weapon if under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
  • Self defence is not a valid reason/excuse to carry a slingshot

What really stands out for me (besides common sense) is that if I am carrying a slingshot, it is best to have it disassembled (band removed), and not to have one at all if I have had even just one drink. Other than that, provided I don’t use it in public or on someone else’s land, and don’t act in a way which could be viewed as threatening, I should be fine.

Below are copies of the relevant sections of the Weapons Act 1990.

56 Discharge of weapon on private land without owner’s consent prohibited

(1) In this section—owner of private land includes the occupier of the land.private land means land that is not a public place.weapon includes an antique firearm, spear gun, longbow and slingshot.

(2) A person must not, without  reasonable excuse, discharge aweapon on or across private land without the express consentof the owner.Maximum penalty—20 penalty units or 3 months imprisonment.

(3) A person must not carry a weapon on private land without theexpress consent of the owner unless—

(a) the person has a reasonable excuse; or

(b) the weapon is unloaded, broken or for another reasoncan not be readily discharged.Maximum penalty—20 penalty units.

57 Particular conduct involving a weapon in a public place prohibited

(1) In this section—weapon includes—

(a) an antique firearm, spear gun, longbow or sword; and

(b) a replica of a weapon; and

(c) a replica of a thing mentioned in paragraph (a); and

(d) a slingshot or shanghai.

(2) A person must not, without reasonable excuse, carry a weaponexposed to view in a public place.Maximum penalty—20 penalty units or 3 months imprisonment.

(3) A person must not, without  reasonable excuse, carry in a public place a loaded firearm  or a weapon capable of beingdischarged. Maximum penalty—60 penalty units or 1 year’simprisonment.

(4) A person must not, without  reasonable excuse, discharge aweapon in, into, towards, over or through a public place.Maximum penalty—100 penalty units or 2 yearsimprisonment.

(5) It is a reasonable excuse for subsection (2) to carry a swordexposed to view in a public place—

(a) to perform a lawful activity, duty or employment; or

(b) to participate in a lawful entertainment, recreation orsport; or

(c) to exhibit the sword; or

(d) for use for a lawful purpose.

Example for paragraph (a)—A person may carry a sword for ceremonial purposes at anofficial function attended by the Governor.

Example for paragraph (b)—A person may carry a sword as an accessory while playing in apipe band.

Example for paragraph (c)—A person who collects swords may exhibit them at a fete oranother public gathering.

Example for paragraph (d)—A person may carry a sword as part of an official uniform theperson is entitled to wear.

(6) It is not a reasonable excuse for subsection (2) or (3) to carry aweapon in a public place for self-defence purposes.

(7) In deciding what is a reasonable excuse for subsection (2) or(3), regard may be had, among  other things, to whether theway the weapon is carried, or when and where it is carried,would cause a reasonable person  concern that he or she, orsomeone else in the vicinity, may be threatened or harmed.

58 Dangerous conduct with weapon prohibited generally

(1) In this section—weapon includes—

(a) an antique firearm, explosive tool, captive bolt humanekiller, spear gun, longbow or sword; and

(b) a replica of a weapon; and

(c) a replica of a thing mentioned in paragraph (a); and

(d) an explosive; and

(e) a slingshot or shanghai.

(2) A person must not—

(a) without reasonable excuse; and

(b) by the physical possession or use of a weapon;engage in conduct, alone or with another, likely to cause—

(c) death or injury to a person; or

(d) unlawful destruction or damage to property; or

(e) alarm to another person.

Maximum penalty—100 penalty units or 2 years imprisonment.

59 Possession or use of weapon under the influence of liquor or a drug prohibited

(1) In this section—weapon includes—

(a) an antique firearm, spear gun, longbow or sword; and

(b) a replica of a thing mentioned in paragraph(a); and

(c) a slingshot or shanghai; and(d) an explosive.

(2) A person must not have physical possession  of or use aweapon if the person is under the influence of liquor or a drug.

Maximum penalty—20 penalty units.

5 comments

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  3. Mate I find your blog very interesting as you share many interests I do, from RC heli’s to slingshots. On the topic of the latter, I agree with your synopsis of the Weapons Act and would even take it further; not that I own a firearm though have numerous friends who (legally) do, I am unable to find in this Act or policy where it would be illegal, for example, to fire an air rifle on your own property. To kill a menacing rodent for example. To obtain a recreational shooters licence you need to nominate a property size of minimum 40 acres. This appears to be in lieu of joining a shooting club. However that relates to a licence application and in the sections of thr Act you quoted, there is nothing about discharging a firearm on a private property.
    It would be a bit risqué to say the least but as someone who works in the justice field I’ve always questioned this.
    Great blog eh

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