For several years soft air weapons and other
imitation weapons have been available as fashionable toys in the European
market, and significantly also via internet shops. The main producer of plastic
imitation weapons is Japan. Small pellets are shot with these weapons. This
poses a danger of injury. Eyes in particular are at risk. Much more serious are
the dangers which arise from confusing such weapons.
The particular problem of soft air weapons is that they are difficult or
impossible to differentiate from genuine firearms even by specialists. Incidents
from abroad show that direct confrontation with a crime involving soft air
weapons may have very serious consequences.
Soft air weapons are not
toys. So they do not belong in children’s hands. The new weapons law has
regulated the handling of soft air and other imitation weapons since 12 December
If imitation weapons are used for threatening purposes, even if the
intention is playful, there will quickly be a serious effect. They then
basically cause the same reaction as a genuine firearm. In the stressful
situation of being threatened a person may not consider the weapon to be
harmless after all. The person will therefore react instinctively in the same
way as if they had been threatened by a genuine firearm. In terms of the
threatening effect, the imitation weap-ons must therefore be considered as
identical to a genuine weapon. This is the greatest danger with these
This fact was taken into account with a law change.
Before 2009 the focus of the prevention campaign was on information concerning
the danger of confusing imitation weapons with real firearms. This focus has
changed. Since 12 December 2008 the new weapons law applies which regulates the
handling of imitation weapons.
The new target of the prevention campaign
«Soft Air Weapons» is therefore:
Informing the population about
the current legal situation.
The prevention campaign "Soft Air Weapons" was
created in 2001 by an interdisciplinary working group and revised in 2009 by the
Federal Office of Police (fedpol) and the Swiss Crime Prevention (SCP). The information complements the
anti-violence campaign of the SCP.
campaign «Soft Air Weapons» is supported by the following organisations: