Ask a Trooper: How to safely and legally transport firearms

Published 10:40 pm Wednesday, December 12, 2018

Ask a Trooper by Troy Christianson

Troy Christianson


Question: If a person has a permit to carry in Minnesota, can they transport a loaded rifle or shotgun in a vehicle?

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Answer: The permit to carry law applies only to handguns, so the answer is no, with some exceptions.

MS 97B.045: A person may not transport a firearm in a motor vehicle unless the firearm is:

• Unloaded and in a gun case expressly made to contain a firearm, and the case fully encloses the firearm by being zipped, snapped, buckled, tied or otherwise fastened, and without any portion of the firearm exposed

• Unloaded and in the closed trunk of a motor vehicle, or is a handgun carried in compliance with sections 624.714 and 624.715.

Exceptions are hunting and shooting ranges — a person may transport an unloaded, uncased firearm, excluding a pistol, in a motor vehicle while at a shooting range, lawfully hunting on private or public land or traveling to or from a site the person intends to hunt lawfully that day or has hunted lawfully that day, unless:

• Within Anoka, Hennepin or Ramsey counties

• Within the boundaries of a home rule charter or statutory city with a population of 2,500 or more

• On school grounds

You can avoid a ticket — and a crash — if you simply buckle up, drive at safe speeds, pay attention and always drive sober. Help us drive Minnesota toward zero deaths.

If you have any questions concerning traffic-related laws or issues in Minnesota, send your questions to Sgt. Troy Christianson, Minnesota State Patrol, at 2900 48th St. NW, Rochester MN 55901-5848; or reach him at

Troy Christianson is a sergeant with the Minnesota State Patrol.