Great Smoky Mountains National Park has announced that on December 5, 2009 the U.S. Department of Interior published new regulations that govern the carrying of concealed weapons in areas administered by the National Park Service and on U.S Fish and Wildlife Service refuges.
In Great Smoky Mountains National Park individuals who hold valid permits to carry a concealed weapon issued by the states of Tennessee or North Carolina, or by states which have reciprocal weapons carrying agreements with Tennessee or North Carolina, may also carry those weapons within the Park. Under regulations now in effect weapons can only be transported into the Park in motor vehicles when they are rendered temporarily inoperable or are packed, cased, or stored in a manner that will prevent their ready use.
Kevin Fitzgerald, Deputy Superintendent at the Smokies said, “As with the current regulation, Park Rangers will be strictly enforcing the new regulation.”
The new regulations, which were published in The Federal Register, will become effective in January 2009. Further information on the new regulations and the rationale for their issuance can be found at www.doi.gov/issues/Final20Rule.pdf.