Friday, November 16, 2012

TSA Week in Review: Replica Claymore Landmine Discovered at Tulsa (TUL)

Replica Claymore mine discovered at Tulsa airport.
Replica Mine Discovered at TUL

Inert Ordnance and Grenades Etc. – We continue to find inert hand grenades and other weaponry on weekly basis. Please keep in mind that if an item looks like a realistic bomb, grenade, mine, etc., it is prohibited - real or not. When these items are found at a checkpoint or in checked baggage, they can cause significant delays. I know they are cool novelty items, but it is best not to take them on a plane.  Read here and here on why inert items cause problems.

  • A replica Claymore mine was detected in a checked bag at Tulsa (TUL). It was determined to be inert and had the word “dummy” scrawled upon it.  
  • Two inert detonators were detected in carry-on bags at San Diego (SAN) and Denver (DEN).
  • An HG-1 training grenade in an instructor’s checked bag caused the checked baggage area at Bradley (BDL) to be closed for 20 minutes.
  • 3 inert grenades were discovered this week. Two in checked baggage at Seattle (SEA) & Anchorage (ANC), and the other in a carry-on bag at Oklahoma City (OKC).

Four grenades discovered at OKC, BDL, SEA, DEN, SAN 

Pocket knife hidden in a potato chip can at Austin.
Pocket knife hidden in a potato chip can at Austin

Items in the Strangest Places –It’s important to check your bags prior to traveling. If a prohibited item is discovered in your bag, you could be cited and possibly arrested by local law enforcement. Here are a few examples from this week where prohibited items were found in strange places. 

  • A pocketknife was discovered in a potato chip can at Austin (AUS). New cutting edge flavor?

What Not to Say at an Airport – Statements like these not only delay the people who said them but can also inconvenience many other passengers if the checkpoint or terminal has to be evacuated:

  • An Atlanta passenger approached a flight attendant and asked her if she had ever been hijacked before.

Stun Guns –  Two stun guns were discovered in carry-on bags at checkpoints around the nation: Detroit (DTW), Burbank (BUR)

Miscellaneous Prohibited Items - In addition to all of the other prohibited items we find weekly, our Officers also regularly find firearm components, realistic replica firearms, bb and pellet guns, Airsoft guns, brass knuckles, ammunition, batons, and a lot of sharp pointy things -- to mention a few…

Firearms - Here are pictures of some of the firearms our Officers found in carry-on baggage since I posted last Friday. See a complete list below.  

Six loaded firearms discovered at HOU, ATL, ATL, DFW, TLH
Four loaded firearms discovered at HOU, IAH, IND, CLE
Three loaded firearms discovered at MSO, AUS and RIC.

27 firearms discovered last week at checkpoints. 24 were loaded.
You can travel with your firearms in checked baggage, but they must first be declared to the airline. You can go here for more details on how to properly travel with your firearms. Firearm possession laws vary by state and locality. Travelers should familiarize themselves with state and local firearm laws for each point of travel prior to departure

Unfortunately these sorts of occurrences are all too frequent which is why we talk about these finds. Sure, it’s great to share the things that our officers are finding, but at the same time, each time we find a dangerous item, the throughput is slowed down and a passenger that likely had no ill intent ends up with a citation or in some cases is even arrested. This is a friendly reminder to please leave these items at home. Just because we find a prohibited item on an individual does not mean they had bad intentions, that's for the law enforcement officer to decide. In many cases, people simply forgot they had these items.

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