AUSTIN (KXAN) — An Austin-based store that sells “bulletproof” backpacks is reporting a huge surge in sales —which is consistent with national trends— since two mass shootings over the weekend shocked the country.
Roman Zrazhevskiy, CEO of online store, ReadyToGoSurvival.com, that sells ballistics shield inserts for backpacks told KXAN the company has seen a “significant sales spikes since the El Paso shooting.” With a typical baseline of about 100 units sold per month, Zrazhevskiy said there’s been a 250% increase, just in time for back-to-school season.
“Just over the weekend, we processed 300+ orders with many more that still haven’t made it to fulfillment,” he wrote in an email to KXAN. “This is a drastic increase from normal back to school sales. Most orders are for multiple units, as parents are deciding to purchase a PakProtect for each member of the family.”
The company has also been receiving hundreds of phone calls from concerned parents, asking about which product is recommended and would offer the best protection.
At the national level, sales are surging at the same staggering 200% to 300% rate, according to a report by CNN. Demand for the bags increased after the shootings at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School and Santa Fe High School in 2018.
National stores like Guard Dog Security, Bullet Blocker and TuffyPacks are all seeing a significant uptick in sales as parents prepare to send their children back to school. In Austin, Office Depot and Office Max stores also sell bulletproof backpacks as KXAN reported last week.
The products are not inexpensive, however, retailing between $120 and $300. Bulletproof backpacks that cost more than $100 will not qualify for tax-free weekend that starts Friday.
While some school districts around the country are banning the bulletproof backpacks, Austin, Round Rock and Leander school districts told KXAN they have no such policies.