Military Policy & Weapons/Serrated knives

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Question
Are serrated knives banned?  If so, where is the ban cited?
Thanks,
- Rick

Answer
I must confess, I thought you were mistakenly referring to automatic (switchblade) knives. As an attorney and weapons expert, I had never heard of such a ban. However, you are quite correct according to a large mailorder sportsmans (shooter) company. Such companies make every effort to research the laws of state and local governments and include a list of the states and jurisdictions where they cannot send a particular item to. I noted 3 knives in one such catelogue. THe first was a large 16" bowie style survival knife. It had a saw tooth spine and a partially serrated blade. It was restricted in CO,CT,AL,Peoria, IL, (Marion, Napa, Ventura, &Yalo, counties CA; Canada, and Miami Dade &Sarasota Counties FL. THe second item was a standard Air Force Survival knife 9 inch blade non serrated with only a saw tooth spine. It cannot be shipped to TN, CO,CT,AL,Peoria, IL, (Marion, Napa, Ventura, &Yalo, counties CA; Canada, and Miami Dade &Sarasota Counties FL. The third knife is 10 inches with a 5 inch drop point blade, serrated a little on top. I would consider it a regular hunitng knife. It cannot be shipped to
CO,CT,AL,Peoria, IL, (Marion, Napa, Ventura, &Yalo, counties CA; Canada, and Miami Dade & Sarasota Counties FL. The fourth knife is only 9 1/2 inches with a 41/2 inch blade with 7 serrations on the top. It has the same restrictions. I don't know if its because of the serrations, saw tooth or size, but the restrictions are certainly interesting. A non-serrated thumb stud lockback 3 inch blade, the kind most carpenters would carry, is also restricted in most of the afformentioned locations. IT would seem that some of these restrictions are for the serrated blades which apparently alos include saw tooth blades. During WWI there were a couple of bayonets with saw teeth on the spines. Whether these were designed to help soldiers build log fortifications or to better destroy an enemy soldier in hand to hand combat, I don't know. However, they were outlawed later by the Geneva convention.
THe only other thing I can add is that most knives over 3 inches (serrated or not)are considered illegal to carry in many jurisdictions. Some places also have restrictions on the WWI trench knife that had brass knuckles built into the handle. THis is more understandable, csince thiose same jurisdictioins outlaw brss knuckles. But the serrated or saw tooth knife is a tool and an aid for peopel who don't know how to keep a regular knife sharp. The logic defies me. Hoe that helps.  

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Richard Albright

Expertise

Questions on chemical weapons, explosive ordnance, environmental cleanup of military bases and ranges.

Experience

Military weapons and antique firearms expert. Remedial Project Manager for 7 years cleaning up world war one's second largest chemical weapons manufacturing site. 1st Lt. USAR Vietnam Era.

Organizations
ASTSWMO Association of State Territory Solid Waste Management Officials ITRC Interstate Technology and Regulatory Council

Publications
Author: Cleanup of Chemical and Explosive Ordnance. Published by Elsevier. Made Science and Technology Best Seller List Geophyisical Prove-Outs for Munitions Response Projects 2004, by Interstate Technology and Regulatory Council (64 pages, contributing author). Small Arms Range Technology (SMART II) 2005, by Interstate Technology and Regulatory Council (70 pages, contributing author). Technical Guidance-Perchlorate 2005, by Interstate Technology and Regulatory Council (70 pages, contributing author).

Education/Credentials
4 degrees, BA, JD, MS, PhD.

Awards and Honors
Cafritz Award 2001 $7500 prize. 3 performance awards signed by current Supreme Court Justice. 1995-1996, Strathmore’s Who’s Who Registry of Business Leaders. 1998-1999, Marquis Who’s Who in Science and Engineering Printed Media: Washingtonian Magazine December 2000, 12 page story two pictures; 2001, July 28, 2001, The Washington Post Picture B-1; Numerous other stories in the Washington Post; Washington Times; The Ohio News Herald; The Kansas City Star; The Northwest Current; Electronic Media: HTB-TV Russia, 3 minutes prime time; CNN-TV; CBC Radio Canada; Subject of Fox 5 story by Melanie Alnwich winning a national Emmy; and, recognition in numerous other news media.

Past/Present Clients
District of Columbia Government

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