A pocket knife is an essential tool for every man. It can be used for many different purposes such as opening boxes, cutting rope, carving wood, etc. A pocket knife is also useful for self defense if needed.
However, there are some rules that you should follow when using a pocket knife. The first thing to consider is the legal blade length.
There are two types of blades that you can use in a pocket knife. One type is called the fixed blade.
In this article, I will discuss the legal blade length for both types of knives.
- Legal blade length for fixed-blade knife:
The legal blade length for fixed-blade knives varies from state to state and country to country. However, most country require at least 3 inches of blade on your knife.
This means that the total length of the knife must be no less than 7.6 centimeters or more than three times the minimum required blade length.
- Legal blade length for folding blade knife:
The blade of any folding knife must be less than 3.5 inches in overall length, including the guard and tip-up feature or mechanism. The blade may not exceed 2.25 inches from its point to the handle end when closed.
This means that if you have an 8 inch folder with a 4 1/2″ blade it would only count as having 5 1/4″ total length.
Is it illegal to carry a knife around in my pocket in UK?
It is NOT illegal for you to carry a knife in your pocket. It is however against the law to be in possession of a blade longer than 3cm (1.2in) on public transport.
This includes trains, buses, trams and underground stations. Whereas, carrying a knife over 3cm long anywhere else is perfectly fine.
You do need to keep it concealed though. If someone sees you they could call the police who might then arrest you.
UK Knife laws of carrying blades
In England and Wales, you are allowed to carry a knife in public if it is not fixed on your person or in a sheath and it is less than 3in (7.5cm) long. You must be able to show that it was for lawful purpose.
In Scotland, you can carry a knife in public without having to show it was for a lawful purpose. It also doesn’t have to be less than 3in long. Furthermore, you don’t even need to tell anyone about it.
If you live in Northern Ireland, you cannot carry a knife in public unless it has been registered by the Police Service of Northern Ireland.
What happens if I am caught with a knife in my bag?
If you get stopped by the police while walking down the street with a knife in your handbag, you won’t necessarily go to jail. But you’ll probably face fines and possibly community service.
The law is pretty clear on this: You can carry any kind of weapon as long as it doesn’t cause harm or pose an immediate threat. So if you’re carrying a folding-knife that has no sharp edge, then there’s nothing wrong with it.
However, if you have something like a switchblade — which opens automatically when pulled out from its sheath — then it could be considered illegal and can accuse you of bringing dangerous weapon or lethal weapons under some circumstances.
Type of knife – Illegal knife banned in UK
Here are some list of type of knife that is prohibited and the lawful authority can accuse you of illegal possession and carrying dangerous weapon in public. Whereas, other types of knives such as hunting knife, utility knife, kitchen knife, filleting knife, fixed-blade bushcraft knife, ordinary pocket knife, belt-buckle knives, swiss army etc., are permitted to carry in public.
- Switchblade knife and other dangerous knives
Any knife designed to open automatically by pressure applied to one side of the blade; e.g. spring action knives, Auto-Open Knives, disguised knives, gravity knife, flick knives, automatic knives, pen knives, stiletto knives, ballistic knives, grades K-12 Knives, ejector knife, tomahawks, daggers, dirk knife, air gauge knives, flick knives, lipstick knives, bowie knives, Ballistic knives and butterfly knives.
This includes all common types of swords:
Cane Swords, Axe Blades and other bladed weapons are not allowed in most public places. They can be carried on your person or inside of your vehicle but they must be concealed from view by being sheathed or tucked into some type of container such as a belt pouch.
How long of a blade is lethal in?
The average adult male will die within seconds if he is stabbed with a knife or sharp instrument longer than 4 inches (10cm).
A woman will survive for up to 15 minutes if she is stabbed with a knife longer than 3 inches (8cm) but dies after 30 minutes if the blade is longer than 5 inches (13cm). Whereas, a child would only suffer serious injury if the knife was more than 2 inches long.
So what does “long” mean? The maximum permissible length depends upon where you are. In England and Wales, the limit is 6 inches, whereas in Scotland it is 8 inches.
If you are found guilty of possessing a knife over these limits, you may receive a fine of £1000 plus court costs.
What about a dagger?
A dagger is defined as a short sword used primarily for stabbing rather than cutting. It usually consists of two blades joined at their hilts.
Daggers were once commonly worn by soldiers and guardsmen because they were easy to conceal and use without drawing attention to themselves.
However, nowadays many people wear them purely for decoration. All in all, there isn’t much difference between a dagger and any other kind of small knife.
If you’re caught wearing an offensive weapon like this, you’ll probably face a hefty fine and possibly even jail time. You should never point a dagger at anyone unless you intend to stab him/her.
What are the offense of bringing offensive weapon such as carrying of knives in UK?
If you are planning to travel to the UK, then you should be aware of the laws regarding the possession of weapons. There is a law called “Offence of Bringing Offensive Weapon”.
The law states that if you carry a knife or other offensive weapon while traveling in the UK, then you could be arrested and charged.
The law also applies to the possession of these items at home. You cannot keep these items in your house without permission from the police.
If you are found guilty of having an offensive weapon, then you could be sentenced to up to 5 years in prison.
- If you carry a knife or any other offensive weapon on public transport or anywhere else, you will get arrested.
- You can be fined up to £1000 for carrying an offensive weapon.
- You may also be imprisoned for up to two to five years if convicted.
UK knife law explained for the outdoors
The UK knife law is a complicated one, but it’s not as bad as you might think. In fact, there are many good reasons to own a knife or two when traveling abroad.
Traveling With Knives: The basics legal definition
Knife laws vary from country to country, so before packing up your gear make sure that you know what the local rules are regarding carrying weapons. In addition, always check with the embassy or consulate office about which countries require permits to bring certain kinds of blades.
In general, however, here are the basic guidelines for traveling with knives:
- Carry them openly. This means no concealing them in pockets or bags. If you do have to conceal them, use something like a money clip or zipper bag.
- Keep them out of sight unless absolutely necessary.
In general, you can use any type of knife that is not prohibited by law. If it has an overall length greater than 4 inches, then it must be registered with the state in which you live and carry it concealed.
You may also have to register your knife if it is used as part of a weapon or tool. The registration process varies from one state to another.