Pennsylvania Code & Bulletin

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The Pennsylvania Code website reflects the Pennsylvania Code changes effective through 52 Pa.B. 1354 (February 26, 2022).

58 Pa. Code § 135.181. Rifle and handgun ranges.

§ 135.181. Rifle and handgun ranges.

 (a)  General provisions. In addition to §  135.2 (relating to unlawful actions) and except as provided in §  135.182 (relating to ranges, State Game Lands No. 176), the following pertain to lands under Commission ownership, lease or jurisdiction designated as rifle or handgun ranges:

   (1)  Rifle and handgun ranges are open from 8 a.m., prevailing time, until sunset Monday through Saturday and from 12 noon to sunset Sunday, unless otherwise posted; except the Sunday immediately preceding and any Sunday throughout the duration of the regular firearms deer seasons and the regular firearms bear seasons, when the hours are 8 a.m. to sunset.

   (2)  A range may be reserved for exclusive use by an organized group from January 1 through October 1. Applications for a range reservation shall be made through the appropriate regional director or a designee at least 20 days in advance.

   (3)  An individual may not use the range during any period reserved by an organized group.

   (4)  An individual or an organized group using the range is responsible for keeping the area clean and free of debris, and may not discard, deposit, leave or throw litter except in approved refuse containers. Range users shall remove targets from range backboards when shooting is completed and prior to leaving the range.

   (5)  The Commission is not responsible for anyone injured on the range. An individual using Commission- owned ranges does so at his own risk and assumes all responsibility for injuries to a person or property caused by or to him.

   (6)  When more than one person is using the range, a range officer shall be designated.

   (7)  An individual under 16 years of age may not use the range unless accompanied by a person 18 years of age or older.

   (8)  The appropriate regional director or designee may close a range by posting signs to that effect. An individual or organized group may not use the range during a period when it is posted as closed.

 (b)  Prohibited acts. At a rifle and handgun range located on land under Commission ownership, lease or jurisdiction, except when authorized by the appropriate regional director or a designee, it is unlawful to:

   (1)  Discharge a firearm from any location on the range other than an established shooting station on the firing line.

   (2)  Discharge a firearm at any target other than a paper target placed on a permanent target backboard mounted by the Commission. Users are prohibited from intentionally shooting at or damaging the frames or stands constructed by the Commission to mount permanent target backboards.

   (3)  Discharge armor piercing, incendiary, explosive, tracer or multiple projectile ammunition.

   (4)  Be intoxicated, use or possess an intoxicating beverage or controlled substance on the range.

   (5)  Discharge an automatic firearm.

   (6)  Load or discharge a firearm that contains more than six rounds of single projectile ammunition.

   (7)  Shoot clay birds anywhere except areas designated by the Director by signs stating that clay bird shooting is permitted.

   (8)  Load or discharge a firearm or use a range facility for any reason without possessing a valid Pennsylvania hunting or furtaker license or a Commission-issued range permit signed by its holder. This prohibition does not apply to persons 15 years of age or younger or up to one person accompanying another person in possession of a valid Pennsylvania hunting or furtaker license or a Commission-issued range permit.

   (9)  Operate, manipulate or discharge a firearm in negligent disregard for the safety of other persons present at or nearby the range. This is specifically intended to include loading a firearm, operating or manipulating a loaded firearm, or discharging a firearm anywhere on the firing range while another person is downrange.

   (10)  Use a Commission range in violation of any other requirement of this section or posted signage.

 (c)  Range designation. The default designation for Commission ranges, regardless of length or size, is as a rifle range. The Commission may designate any range as a handgun only range by posting appropriate signage.


   The provisions of this §  135.181 amended under the Game and Wildlife Code, 34 Pa.C.S. § §  322(c)(4) and (6), 721(a), 2102(a) and 2901(b).


   The provisions of this §  135.181 adopted June 19, 1987, effective July 1, 1987, 17 Pa.B. 2464; amended December 1, 1995, effective January 7, 1995, 25 Pa.B. 5508; amended March 23, 2007, effective March 24, 2007, 37 Pa.B. 1309; amended April 1, 2011, effective April 2, 2011, 41 Pa.B. 1764; amended May 12, 2017, effective May 13, 2017, 47 Pa.B. 2715. Immediately preceding text appears at serial pages (356399) to (356401).

Cross References

   This section cited in 58 Pa. Code §  135.182 (relating to ranges, State Game Lands No. 176); and 58 Pa. Code §  147.1003 (relating to range permit).

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