A new North Carolina law allows hunters to install noise suppressors on their rifles and shotguns.
The Charlotte Observer reports that North Carolina becomes the 40th state to legalize suppressors. The change was part of broad legislation that expanded where concealed handguns can be legally carried.
Republican Sen. Shirley Randleman of Wilkes County calls her amendment a health issue. She says hunters and audiologists in her district informed her of hunters' hearing loss problems.
David Drummond, the owner of Carolina Sporting Arms in Charlotte, says suppressors may also reduce neighbors' complaints.
Suppressors muffle sound by reducing the speed of gases coming from a gun's barrel.
A hunter must meet federal qualifications to own a suppressor, which includes criminal background checks and a $200 tax.
(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.)