Friday, March 1, 2013

TSA Week in Review: 19 Loaded Firearms Discovered This Week



Loaded firearm.
Firearm Discovered at Cleveland (CLE)

19 Firearms Discovered This Week – of the 19 firearms, 17 were loaded and two had rounds chambered. Here are pictures of some of the firearms. See a complete list and more photos at the bottom of this post.


Guns Hidden In Detergent: In an attempt to avoid declaring his firearms, a passenger at Houston (IAH) wrapped two guns in newspaper and placed them in a box of detergent powder in his checked baggage.

Guns Hidden In Detergent: In an attempt to avoid declaring his firearms, a passenger at Houston (IAH) wrapped two guns in newspaper and placed them in a box of detergent powder in his checked baggage. It’s permissible to travel with firearms in your checked baggage as long as you follow the proper guidelines. Placing firearms in a box of powdered detergent is not one of the guidelines. 


     An inert grenade was discovered in checked baggage at Greensboro (GSO).
Discovered at GSO
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 in checkpoint screening. I know they are cool novelty items, but you cannot bring them on a plane. Read here and here on why inert items cause problems.

  • An inert grenade was discovered in checked baggage at Greensboro (GSO). 
Items in the Strangest Places –It’s important to examine your bags prior to traveling to ensure no prohibited items are inside. If a prohibited item is discovered in your bag, you could be cited and quite possibly arrested by local law enforcement. Here are a few examples from this week where prohibited items were found in strange places.

  • Two cane swords were discovered this week at New York Kennedy (JFK), and Detroit (DTW). 
Stun Guns – Seven stun guns were discovered this week in carry-on bags around the nation: two at Atlanta (ATL) and the others at Anchorage (ANC), Detroit (DTW), Fort Myers (RSW), San Francisco (SFO), and Seattle (SEA).

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:

  • After being told he was not permitted to bring two cans of soda in his checked carry-on baggage, a Phoenix (PHX) passenger told the Officer that each soda can had a 30-second detonator inside of it. There were no detonators in the cans.
  • During a bag search, a Flint (FNT) traveler stated: “Be careful, there’s a bomb in my bag.”

Large knife (JFK)
Discovered at JFK

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…

Photos of Firearms Discovered This Week

5 loaded firearms.

 
19 Firearms Discovered This Week – of the 19 firearms, 17 were loaded and two had rounds chambered.
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. The passenger can face a penalty as high as $7,500.00. 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.

*In order to provide a timely weekly update, I compile my data from a preliminary report. The year-end numbers will vary slightly (increase) from what I report in the weekly updates. However, any monthly, midyear, or end-of-year numbers TSA provides on this blog or elsewhere will not be estimates.



If you haven’t seen it yet, make sure you check out our post highlighting the dangerous, scary, and downright unusual items our officers found in 2012.



Bob Burns 
TSA Blog Team 

If you have a travel related issue or question that needs an immediate answer, you can contact us by clicking here.

32 comments:

Anonymous said...

Before the haters come on I just wanted to say while some of things are bad I d rather be safer than sorry. Also I ve been searched before I was doing a student project and left some solder in my backpack. After they realized I was just a student and showed me the image that caused concern. I can see how common items can cause alarm

Wintermute said...

Blogger Bob said...

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:

My freedom of speech is more important than the other passengers' convenience. Their freedom of speech is more important than my convenience.

After being told he was not permitted to bring two cans of soda in his checked baggage, a Phoenix (PHX) passenger told the Officer that each soda can had a 30-second detonator inside of it. There were no detonators in the cans.

How was is determined there was no detonator? Was the airport evacuated?

During a bag search, a Flint (FNT) traveler stated: “Be careful, there’s a bomb in my bag.”

Again, was the airport evacuated while the bomb squad was called? If not, that seems to be admission that this was not a viable threat.

Anonymous said...

Like it or not, there are limitations to free speech.
You can be held accountable for the words you say. Crying out fire in a crowded place could cause injury and death if people panic. The same could be said for saying you have a bomb in an airport.
If your words cause delays or worse, you should be held accountable for them.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...
Before the haters come on I just wanted to say while some of things are bad I d rather be safer than sorry.

And thus Freedom dies, not with a bang, but with a whimper.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...
If your words cause delays or worse, you should be held accountable for them.


The TSA causes delays. The TSA causes worse (I'd think losing precious Constitutional Rights is 'worse', don't you?).

Who's going to hold them responsible??

Wintermute said...

Anonymous said...
"Like it or not, there are limitations to free speech."

I never claimed otherwise.

"You can be held accountable for the words you say."

Agreed.

"Crying out fire in a crowded place could cause injury and death if people panic. The same could be said for saying you have a bomb in an airport."

This is where we differ. It depends on how this was stated. Was it screamed, inciting panic? Or was it said sarcastically? Or in a joking manner? In other words, was it possibly seen as a viable threat, or no? We have no idea, as Bob conveniently leaves out what happens when these statements are made. He only states what COULD happen if you make them.

"If your words cause delays or worse, you should be held accountable for them."

Delays? Too bad. Worse? Depends. Inciting public panic is one thing, having a TSO with no sense of humor is another.

@SkyWayManAz said...

There are limitations to free speech as already pointed out in this thread. If you claim, even while laughing, there are detonators in soda cans it will probably ruin your whole day. Part of the price of having free speech is that anything you say can and will be used against you in a court of law. Just a suggestion but you also have the right to not incriminate yourself too.

That being said I fail to see why TSA still considers liquids a threat when they can test them. I don't remember which regular TSA Blogger on here (not Bob) responded to me earlier on this saying it would slow the line down far to much to test every single liquid brought through. You know what else would slow the line down? Swabbing every single persons hands to tests for nitrates. There are to many false positives so it would probably cause chaos if every single person was suddenly tested. Clearly TSA doesn't do this and I'm sure they could use a more random approach with liquids too.

I believe the average soda can is about 350ml. If I took a drink and put the rest in three 100ml bottles I'd be in full compliance taking them to the checkpoint. Unless I was as stupid as the gentleman at PHX.

Tony Clifton said...

Wouldn't the pre-9/11 and pre-TSA screening procedures have detected all of these?

Anonymous said...

Bob, it would be nice if you proofread your posts. The New York airport you reference is (JFK) *not* (JKF). Simple care about typos might just improve your overall image. Leave them, and you seem sloppy as well as uncaring.

Anonymous said...

"What not to say in an airport -" should be changed to "what we will get sued for if we retaliate against the passenger." I hope Frank Hannibal takes you for all you're worth.

Anonymous said...

So you still found absolutely nothing with the body scanners? Why do yous till use them?

Anonymous said...

New York Kennedy (JKF)

J. F. K.

Geez, they can't even get the names of the airports right, and we trust them with our security??!?!

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...
Crying out fire in a crowded place could cause injury and death if people panic.

Yes, falsely screaming "fire" can cause a panic. But is it illegal to say the word "fire" in a normal tone of voice, as part of a joke?

For instance: Three men were to be executed by firing squad. The first was placed in place, but yelled "Flood!", and was able to escape in the confusion. The second was put in place, but yelled "Tornado!" and was able to escape in the confusion. The last one was put in place and yelled "Fire!"

The same could be said for saying you have a bomb in an airport.

Making a joke about something is not the same as declaring it to be true.

RB said...

Anonymous said...
Bob, it would be nice if you proofread your posts. The New York airport you reference is (JFK) *not* (JKF). Simple care about typos might just improve your overall image. Leave them, and you seem sloppy as well as uncaring.

March 2, 2013 at 11:55 PM
..............

An occasional typo, wrong word, or incorrect punctuation is understandable.

Dishonesty, the hallmark of TSA , its blog, and its taxpayer paid bloggers is not understandable nor excusable.

SSSS for some reason said...

First, nothing found with the fancy scanners?

Second, still no terrorists captured?

Third, the number of guns seems uncharacteristically low this week. You usually get an average of about 30~ish finds... what happened this week that there were so few?

@SkyWayManAz said...

Anonymous said:

"I hope Frank Hannibal takes you for all you're worth."

I'd be surprised if he gets a dime. Would you win a lawsuit against the cops if you got pulled over for speeding then arrested after joking about fleeing a murder scene? Press your luck there if you want but you don't know who they might be looking for that day. Don't get me wrong I totally believe TSA is capable of pulling a stunt like that even if he'd left his comments to peanut butter. He didn't though and that is not in dispute so he has no case. TSA is on solid legal ground on this one.

Security companies at our airports for almost 30 years before 9/11 would have been sued out of existence without Federal law and legal precedent on their side. "Oh look there's Jack. Hi Jack!" That joke is in “Airplane!” for a reason 20 years before the TSA existed. Sadly “Airplane II” predicted what we have now. Security scanners capable of seeing your junk but weapons go right on through.

Anonymous said...

Let me give the TSA some sound advice for what NOT to say to passengers. A TSA officer asked me if I signed up for TSA Pre while I had waited over 30 minutes in an airport security line. I not only told the TSA person that I would not sign up for the program, but I also conveyed that I wasn't in the habit of offering personal information to organizations that employs criminals or gropes strangers. Your TSA employee "assumed" that I trusted, and had some level of respect for, your organization. I, like millions of Americans, DO NOT have any trust or respect for the TSA. When passing through an airport checkpoint, my preference is to not speak with any TSA employee.

Anonymous said...

Blogger Bob-
Unfortunatly I am familiar with the PBI on Feb 25. A hunting trip gone ary because of a forgotten gun in a briefcase to protect kids that were at the camp. It was seized and so was the person. However you show the gun was loaded. It was not.

Anonymous said...

All of these items can be found in carry-on luggage with a walk-through metal detector. So why does TSA irradiate us and take naked photos of us? When will the (very delinquent) public comment period for the whole-body imagers start?

Anonymous said...

Blogger Bob said...

After being told he was not permitted to bring two cans of soda in his checked baggage...

What?! I've pack many beers in my checked baggage in the past? When did this change? I cannot find this restriction anywhere on the tsa.gov site. Could this be another case of a TSO making stuff up only to cause the passenger grief?

RB said...

It's good to see that TSA thinks spending $50 Million on uniforms is more important than using that money for checkpoint operations, especially while Napolitano is playing Chicken Little telling the world how backed up TSA checkpoints are all of a sudden.

It's pretty clear that in the eyes of TSA the public comes last!

Anonymous said...

The new foreign made uniforms will look spiffy. A great idea to improve morale and professional conduct. Way to go TSA!

Anonymous said...

I just read that the TSA will begin to allow "small knives" to be carried again. Does this include my beloved Swiss Army Knife? How is the blade length measured? Can you provide some details on this policy change?

Bob Burns (TSA Blog Team) said...

Sorry, that was supposed to say "carry-on." Fixing it now.

Bob Burns
TSA Blog Team

Anonymous said...

RB said...
An occasional typo, wrong word, or incorrect punctuation is understandable.

Not for 80 Billion dollars, it isn't.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...
Before the haters come on I just wanted to say while some of things are bad I d rather be safer than sorry.

And thus Freedom dies, not with a bang, but with a whimper.

EXACTLY!

Anonymous said...

one thing scares me more than TSA's infringment on our rights. That is the ignorance and forgetfulnes of the public. How rediculous is it to ask "how many terrorists have you caught?" The answer is of course zero. You know, I have never crashed my car but I stillcarry insurance. I have never been robbed but I still lock my doors at night. Did you ever think maybe they havent been caught because TSA is a deturant to their activity? Its called prevention. Honestly I am more affraid of what will come if all the whiners win and TSA is replaced by private forces.
Do i hate going thru security? Of course I do,but I sure do like getting home safely. And I am sure to thank TSA everytime I go thru a checkpoint. By the way, if you find mis-spelled words, I dont really care. Have a great day

SSSS for some reason said...

"... Did you ever think maybe they havent been caught because TSA is a deturant to their activity? Its called prevention. Honestly I am more affraid of what will come if all the whiners win and TSA is replaced by private forces."

Oh. You mean like in all the years before the TSA took over? All those scary horrible years when airplanes were raining out of the sky every week with thousands upon thousands of people dead or injured? Back in the days when you couldn't go a single week without reading in the paper about some hijacking attempt or a bomb threat....

I am soooo glad the TSA stepped in to protect us from all those bad guys that were just waiting behind every suit case, or in every over-head bin, just waiting for you to turn your back and BLAMMO! You are a victim of terrorism.

Now, sarcasm aside, not one single anti-tsa commenter on this site has ever suggested we give up all security and let just anyone and anything on the aircraft. Every single one of us has suggested that the TSA would be more effective in an advisory role while the actual providing of security be returned to the responsibility of the airports and airlines where it belongs. The level of security is not the problem, the government violating the Constitution by providing the security IS the problem.

Mauricio Rosas said...

If I lawfully owned a handgun the police and policy makers would be in violation of the 2nd Amendment if they took it from me without probable cause. I understand why guns are not permitted on airplanes. However if it is a hunting rifle or handgun, each one with its permit could go on a separate container within the airplane and land safely at its destination with its owner. What should be prohibited are lap tops, cell phones as they have been used for several successful terrorist attacks.

We cannot continue living in fear of the boogie monster. We must again become a FREE people. If we are to be free, then we must trust one another. We need to inter act with our neighbors. Talk to the guy next to you waiting for the airplane.

Anonymous said...

I stumbled upon this blog while looking for information on what I needed to do to get my weapon to the same airport that I plan to fly to. You see I too have had my problems with the fine people of TSA in the past doing and insisting upon me doing things that make no earthly sense, and I am hoping to avoid them this flight by being completely read in on what they are and are not allowed to do.

The last time I flew, they insisted that I stand up out of my wheel chair, walk the ten feet through their metal detectors and wait there standing up while they rode my power chair all the way around the security area to the other side. While waiting, trying to keep from falling over, they decided I had not been messed with enough and ordered me to remove my belt so they could x-ray it. I tried to explain that I had lost a hundred pounds and that my pants would fall down but they told me they didn't care and that I would be refused to clear and put on a do not fly list unless I complied. OK, I took off my belt and my pants dropped to the floor for all the world to see as they x-rayed my belt. Next time I fly, I'm not wearing underwear.

On another flight I bought a drink and a magazine to read from a store right across from the security guy. They told me I couldn't bring my unopened diet coke through because it could be acid or a bomb. I showed them the receipt and that it was an unopened container; they didn't care. I made everyone in line wait as I drank the whole pop. Of course the airport sells the exact same drinks in the waiting area once your through with TSA and those drinks are safe to bring on board with you. They do cost 4 times what the ones outside TSA do though.

The funny thing about guns on board is that I am a retired cop. I used to be able to fly with my gun and handcuffs just by showing the ticket lady my credentials. It was a win win for me and the airline; I didn't have to check any luggage and they got free on board security for the flight. Then they started making us let the pilot keep our weapons, then checking them in locked boxes and we cant carry cuffs, kubatans or anything else that might be used to stop an attacker. Hell now you can't even have a pin knife to peel an orange or nail clippers. Jesus, who has ever been killed with nail clippers?

On 9/11, had we not wimpified our nation and taught them to just give the mugger your wallet, maybe all four planes would have stood up to the terrorist. I'll tell you this, no man with a box cutter is going to take a plane I'm on as long as the TSA still lets me carry a few sharpened number 2 pencils...LOL

tramky said...

I've already had one pocketknife stolen by TSA on the absurd premise that I might be a threat on an airliner with a pocketknife. It was in my pocket because, in my life, it is so insignificant I forgot I had it in a pants pocket. It cost me about $32 and I want that knife back--it's probably at SFO somewhere!

As for the airlines bitching about this change, what THEY must do is provide a way for these small things that would be stolen by TSA agents to be 'checked in' and to fly on the plane somewhere--without going in the passenger's checked baggage, if any (it's far too late for THAT at TSA checkpoints.

This means having a QUICK way to 'check in' otherwise-stolen items like knives and scissors so these trivial items can still be on the plane.

But what are the airlines doing? Trying to further render its passengers defenseless on board AND being apparently content with the notion that its passengers should sit still while TSA steals their property for nonsensical reasons.

Anonymous said...

Why would you think that TSA would steal your pocketknife at the risk of their jobs? Sure there may be a few bad apples - but it is like that everywhere. There is a list of what you can bring on a plane - if you forget, you can go back and check it. If you don't want to or don't have the time - then the fault is yours, not TSA's for following the rules. If the airlines are "asked/made" to check these things, are you willing to pay an addiitonal $100 per ticket for this service? Like anything else in life, there are rules....if you don't like the rules (which are to safeguard you), please don't fly!