Monday, April 22, 2013

TSA Week in Review: 35 Firearms Discovered Last Week – 26 Loaded

Loaded Firearm (ATL)
Loaded Firearm (ATL)
35 Firearms Discovered Last Week – of the 35 firearms, 26 were loaded and 10 had rounds chambered. See a complete list and more photos at the bottom of this post.
Novelty Grenade on plaque that states: "CompaintDept. Take a Number."
Novelty Grenade (ATL)
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.

  • Three inert grenades were discovered last week. Two were in carry-on bags at Atlanta (ATL), and Guam (GUM), and the other was in checked baggage at Las Vegas (LAS).
Stun Gun (IAD)
Stun Gun (IAD)

Stun Guns – 16 stun guns were discovered last week in carry-on bags around the nation.  Six were discovered at San Francisco (SFO), two at Seattle (SEA), and the others at Atlanta (ATL), Las Vegas (LAS), Lihue (LIH), Long Beach (LGB), Phoenix (PHX), Raleigh-Durham (RDU), Sacramento (SMF), and Washington Dulles (IAD).

Knife in Shoe (IAD), Throwing Knife (LAX), and Road Flare (SLC)

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.

  • A 3 ½” knife was discovered concealed in a toothbrush holder at Lihue (LIH).
  • A 3” knife was discovered concealed inside a shoe at Washington Dulles (IAD).
  • A 3” belt buckle knife was discovered at Guam (GUM).

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 Discovered Last Week

2 loaded firearms.
7 loaded firearms.
2 loaded firearms.

35 Firearms Discovered Last Week – of the 35 firearms, 26 were loaded and 10 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. The 2011 list can be found here.

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