Friday, May 31, 2013

TSA Week in Review: 29 Firearms Discovered This Week (26 Loaded)

Loaded Gun (SAV)
Loaded Gun (SAV)

29 Firearms Discovered This Week – Of the 29 firearms, 26 were loaded and 13 had rounds chambered. See a complete list and more photos at the bottom of this post. 
CO2 Cartridges – A total of seven CO2 cartridges were discovered this week, so I thought that it would be appropriate for me to explain when they are permitted to be carried with you. The FAA prohibits CO2 cartridges in both checked and carry-on bags unless they are with an inflatable life vest. You can have up to two in the life vest and two spares. The spares must accompany the life vest and be presented as one unit. CO2 cartridges are also permitted for operating mechanical limbs, along with spare cylinders to ensure an adequate supply for the journey.
Inert Grenade (LAS)
Inert Grenade (LAS)
Inert Ordnance and Grenades etc. - We continue to find inert hand grenades and other weaponry on a 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.

  • Two inert/novelty/replica grenades were discovered at Las Vegas (LAS), and Houston (IAH). The novelty grenade at IAH was in the passenger’s carry-on bag.

Stun Guns – 12 stun guns were discovered this week in carry-on bags around the nation: Three at San Diego (SAN), two at Atlanta (ATL), two at San Juan (SJU), and five others at Baltimore (BWI), Denver (DEN), Honolulu  (HNL), LaGuardia (LGA), and Oakland (OAK).
Stun Gun Cell Phone (ATL), Stun Torch (SAN), Stun Gun (ATL), Stun Torch (SAN)
Stun Gun Cell Phone (ATL), Stun Torch (SAN), Stun Gun (ATL), Stun Torch (SAN)
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 belt buckle knife was discovered at San Jose (SJC).

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:

  • When asked if she had any hazardous materials, a passenger at San Juan stated that she had a bomb.
Knives - Discovered at (L-R) LGB, SJC, SAN, SLC
Discovered at (L-R) LGB, SJC, SAN, SLC

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… 
Firearms Discovered This Week in Carry-On Bags
7 loaded guns.
Discovered at (L-R) ILM, DAL, RIC, BHM, SDF, ATL, PBI
6 loaded guns.
Discovered at (L-R) FAY, AMA, PNS, DTW, CLT, TPA
3 loaded guns.
Discovered at (L-R) JAX, SDF, FLL
2 loaded guns.
Discovered at (L-R) RDU, IDA
Firearm improperly packed in shoe. Checked baggage AEX.
Example of Improper Way to Pack  A Firearm in Checked Baggage (AEX)
29 Firearms Discovered This Week – Of the 29 firearms, 26 were loaded and 13 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.