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SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. (KRON) – On Monday, the Department of Justice (DOJ) announced a new rule to help enable the safe and secure storage of firearms.

The new rule implements the existing Gun Control Act requirement that federal firearms licensees that sell firearms to the general public must certify they have available secure gun storage or safety devices.

“Today’s announcements build on the department’s efforts to reduce the risk of firearms falling into the wrong hands,” said Attorney General Merrick B. Garland.

“Gun safety is a Department of Justice priority, and we will continue to take all appropriate steps to help reduce the number of people killed and injured by the misuse of firearms.”

The DOJ said it has submitted to the Federal Register for publication a final rule, which will take effect on Feb. 3, requiring federal firearms licensees (FFLs) to certify that they have secure gun storage devices available to their customers for purchase.

Secure gun storage or safety device, as defined by statute and regulation, includes a safe, gun safe, gun case, lockbox or other devices that is designed to be or can be used to store a firearm and that is designed to be unlocked only by means of a key, a combination or other similar means.

In addition, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF) published a “Best Practices Guide” for FFLs.

The ATF’s “Best Practices Guide” is designed to assist FFLs in complying with all required firearm laws and regulations that are designed to ensure public safety and the traceability of firearms.

The guide also encourages FFLs to provide customers with ATF publications to help firearms owners better understand their legal obligations, as well as practical steps they can take to help keep firearms out of the hands of prohibited persons and facilitate the safe storage of firearms.