Friday, March 21, 2014

TSA Week in Review – 50 Firearms, Novelty Explosive Alarm Clock and Other Items of Note Discovered In Carry-on Bags This Week


Loaded Gun (HOU)
Loaded Gun (HOU)
50 Firearms Discovered This Week – Of the 50 firearms, 43 were loaded and 15 had rounds chambered. See a complete list and more photos at the bottom of this post.

Novelty Explosive Alarm Clock
Novelty Explosive Alarm Clock
Inert Grenade (MSP)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. When these items these items are found at a checkpoint or in checked baggage, they can cause significant delays in checkpoint screening because the bomb squad or explosives detection professionals must come to resolve the alarm to determine they’re not a threat. Even if they are novelty items, you cannot bring them on a plane.  Read here on why inert items cause problems.

  • A novelty alarm clock resembling an explosive device was discovered in a carry-on bag at Kansas City (MCI).
  • An inert grenade was discovered in a carry-on bag at Minneapolis-St. Paul (MSP).

Artfully Concealed Prohibited Items – 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 or on your body, 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 by our officers in strange places. 


Pendant Knife (JAX), Credit Card Knife (COS), Pen Knife (LAX)
Pendant Knife (JAX), Credit Card Knife (COS), Pen Knife (LAX)
  • 11 credit card knives were discovered this week. Three were discovered at Colorado Springs (COS), two at Kansas City (MCI), two at Bismarck (BIS), and the remainder were discovered at Fargo (FAR), Sloulin Field (ISN), Lansing (LAN), and Shreveport (SHV). Check out this blog post for more information on credit card knives.
  • Two pen knives were discovered this week at Los Angeles (LAX), and San Jose (SJC).
  • A belt buckle knife was discovered at Ft. Lauderdale (FLL). 

Knife (OAK), Throwing Stars (LAX)
Knife (OAK), Throwing Stars (LAX)
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…

Stun Guns14 stun guns were discovered this week in carry-on bags around the nation. Three were discovered at Atlanta (ATL), two at Sacramento (SMF), two at Las Vegas (LAS), and the remainder were discovered at Anchorage (ANC), Birmingham (BHM), Dallas (DAL), Jacksonville (JAX), Lynchburg (LYH), Phoenix (PHX), and Springfield-Branson (SGF).
Airsoft Gun (DAL)
Airsoft Gun (DAL)
Airsoft Guns – An Airsoft gun was discovered in a carry-on bag at Dallas-Love (DAL). Airsoft guns are prohibited in carry-on bags, but allowed in checked baggage. Read this post for more information: TSA Travel Tips Tuesday: Traveling With Airsoft Guns

Firearms Discovered This Week in Carry-On Bags 

 
Guns Discovered At (T-B / L-R): PHX, MFE, LAX, CLT, TUL
Guns Discovered At (L-R/T-B):HOU, LAX, LAS, AUS, FAY, DEN, MSY, TPA

50 Firearms Discovered This Week – Of the 50 firearms, 43 were loaded and 15 had rounds chambered.
*In order to provide a timely weekly update, this data is compiled from a preliminary report. The year-end numbers will vary slightly from what is reported in the weekly updates. However, any monthly, midyear, or end-of-year numbers TSA provides on this blog or elsewhere will be actual numbers and not estimates.

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.

If you haven’t seen it yet, make sure you check out our TSA Blog Year in Review for 2013. You can also check out 2011 & 2012 as well.

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

28 comments:

RB said...

And how much confidence should we have in TSA screeners who can't tell the difference between a Jimmy Choo perfume bottle and a grenade?

Anonymous said...

Doesn't someone need to check Chicago airports better? Can't believe they don't find hardly any there.

Anonymous said...

And when the novelty clock was discovered to be completely harmless, was it confiscated immediately by the TSA or was the owner allowed to check it or mail it or send it home with a friend?

Sure, check it out and have your "crack explosives expert" give it a once over. Then wrap it in the TSA tape you use to wrap around the luggage your employees damage and put it in his checked bag or find another way not to take a person's private propeety.

Frankly, this is such a "novelty", if your employees didn't see it, they should be fired, but it is not a threat to aviation safety.

Lisetta said...

Where is the picture of the "looks like a grenade!" clear round glass perfume bottle? Was it counted in this week's Inert Grenades list?

Who took the $85 bottle of perfume and were they applauded or reprimanded?

What is the TSA policy that allowed a screener to close down a screening line and call in a bomb expert for a round, clear glass bottle of perfume?

Was policy followed in this instance or not?

What happened to the bottle and contents? Is there any proof? Where's the video of the event?

I'm not asking for private Human Resources info, blotter team. Just explain what happened and whether it followed your rules!

We don't need the US government encouraging theft by its employees.

Screenshot

Bubba said...

Nothing again that is dangerous and requires a full body scanner to detect. Please stop with these slow, invasive, expensive and ineffective machines.

And while you are at it, how about ending with the unscientific behavior detection program?

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/03/25/science/in-airport-screening-body-language-is-faulted-as-behavior-sleuth.html?hp&_r=0

Anonymous said...

Why didn't TSA list the Jimmy Choo perfume bottle in the weekly stats? It was supposedly confiscated because it looked like a grenade so seems that would make it a good catch. What was the final disposition of the perfume? Did a TSA screener take it home?

Anonymous said...

Illinois (AKA Chicago)is the last state to allow concealed carry. I would assume that you will see the numbers go up a little as this progresses. Illinois law prohibits the carry of concealed firearms in all sections of the airport, so they shouldn't even be in the check in portion of the airport either. If you are referring to the high firearm murder rate in the Windy City, I assume the people that are doing these crimes with unlawfully possessed firearms aren't flying on aircraft frequently. Don't have statistics to back that, but it kind of makes sense.

Level Head said...

Interesting how the majority of these comments are attacking the quality of the TSA's work or workers themselves. Why so hostile to a person trying to keep you and your love ones safe. Funny that you would tip a waiter 20% even for just doing their job, but all lowly paid TSA agents are performing at sub standard service levels in your opinion. The workers who found one of the 50 concealed guns this week; 47 of which were loaded is still a pin headed government worker. You keep listening to anti government propaganda; it apparently hasn’t affected your judgment at all or your sense of self importance over all your fellow man. Flight delays do piss me off; one simple solution is if found with a weapon while going through airport security go to Jail immediatly pin head!

Anonymous said...

I would tip a waiter 20% for doing their job -- which is serving me my meal, making my dining experiecence enjoyable either by being unobtrusively attentive or by being politely inattentive when needed, and providing an environment that encourages me to frequent the establishment that they work for.

The TSA does none of this. The average TSO has no people skills, no ability to be polite, and not one TSO has ever instilled in me the desire to fly through a US airport unless I absolutely have to. Usually, the only reaction a TSO generates in me is pity. Pity that they have to work for an agency that is even more hated than the IRS.

Anonymous said...

"Why so hostile to a person trying to keep you and your love ones safe."

Because they're doing no such thing. Instead they're performing invasive, dangerous, and asinine searches that make no one safer, have no scientific validity, and are generally not performed elsewhere in the world (see the deeply stupid show carnival). This has nothing to do with being anti-government - I am quite liberal and have an "I (heart) Obama are bumper sticker - and everything to do with being anti-stupidity. TSA is stupidity distilled to nearly its platonic form.

Anonymous said...

"Flight delays do piss me off; one simple solution is if found with a weapon while going through airport security go to Jail immediatly pin head!"

Ah, but TSA has confiscated frosting, perfume bottles, 2-inch plastic toy guns, shampoo, etc. by calling them dangers to planes and passengers! Do you seriously want to send someone to jail for trying to bring a bottle of perfume on board? If you personally forget that you have a 20-oz beverage in your carry-on, should you be jailed for it because TSA has deemed it a danger to a flight? Don't be so quick to call for others to receive excessive punishments for violating procedures that have ridiculous elements!

Anonymous said...

Why was "level head's" attack on fellow commenters approved? Did he not violate Comment Policy, blotter team?

Anonymous said...

Anonymous, your naivety amazes me....

Anonymous said...

"...TSO has no people skills..."

TSA is no worse than the other guards protecting America. Just go to a government office building and you'll get the same treatment as you do in an airline terminal. It isn't fair to pick on TSOs.

That's just the way things are. The people are the suspected enemies of the government. Get over it.

@SkyWayManAz said...

Level Head most of the public agrees with the purpose of why TSA is there to keep flying safe. The problem is TSA has very different ideas of what is keeping us safe than most people consider normal. Most reasonable people have no issues with TSA preventing guns and weapons from being brought onto aircraft. We start to have a problem when TSA considers everyday harmless items to be weapons. The late Gov. Joe Foss almost had his Medal of Honor confiscated by screeners saying. They said it was a weapon and could be used as a throwing star. Does that fit the zero tolerance definition you want to see implemented? Gov. Foss received our nation’s highest honor for shooting down airplanes. Does anyone believe politely explaining that to airport screeners would have helped him out? That kind of overkill reaction to harmless items doesn’t well serve the public. If anything things have gotten much worse since that incident happened, not better.

Concerned citizen said...

This is in response to Anonymous RE the novelty clock: What kind of idiot would even attempt to bring a novelty clock such as this on a plane? It deserved to be not only confiscated but destroyed. This is somebody's idea of a joke? Sick. And you're wrong about it not being a threat to aviation security. The piece of plastic isn't but the intent to deceive is. There are people out there who are scheming every day to take down planes. This is no laughing matter.

RB said...

Anonymous said...
"...TSO has no people skills..."

TSA is no worse than the other guards protecting America. Just go to a government office building and you'll get the same treatment as you do in an airline terminal. It isn't fair to pick on TSOs.

That's just the way things are. The people are the suspected enemies of the government. Get over it.


March 25, 2014 at 6:49 PM

..................................
I totally disagree! TSA is much worse than other government employees. For starters TSa isn't protecting America, they protect transportation systems.

TSA employees are so bright that they confiscated a toy plastic hammer from a mentally challenged man.

TSA employees are so bright that they confiscated a kids toy plastic Disney sword.

TSA employees are so bright that they confiscated a cupcake.

TSA employees are so bright that they held a lady hostage for requesting that her breast milk be screened by means other than xray.

TSA and its employees have proven time and time again, beyond all reasonable doubt, that they are the least capable federal employees.

For $$ Eight Billion Dollars per Year $$ America deserves better.

Anonymous said...

"And you're wrong about it not being a threat to aviation security. The piece of plastic isn't but the intent to deceive is."

I agree that bringing on board the novelty clock was bad call, but "intent to deceive" is an awfully vague reason for deciding that someone (including the owner of the novelty clock) is a terrorist.

Wintermute said...

Anonymous said...
"That's just the way things are. The people are the suspected enemies of the government."

The people? As in "We, the people?" When did that happen? I know by TSA's SOP, it SEEMS that way, but it really shouldn't.

Anonymous said...

If you pull out that novelty item on a plane would everyone get a chuckle?

Anonymous said...

You people amaze me, You make it seem as if it is your God given right to fly. If it was you would be smoking in the lavatory, right? but you don't, because it is against the law. Just like taking a prohibited item on a plane is against the law. Wake up people, not everyone can be anti-rules.

Wintermute said...

Anonymous said...
"You people amaze me, You make it seem as if it is your God given right to fly."

No, but it is our Constitutional right to travel, and many court cases have made it clear that includes by flight.

"If it was you would be smoking in the lavatory, right?"

Huh? That makes no sense whatsoever. What does smoking have to do with travelling by air?

"Wake up people, not everyone can be anti-rules."

I am only "anti-rules" when A) the rule in question is against the other, more weighted, rules, or B) the rules in question are stupid. The TSAs SOP can be said to fall into both category, as the searches are not Constitutionally sound, and they do nothing to keep anyone any safer.

Anonymous said...

"Wake up people, not everyone can be anti-rules"

Um, why not?

Anonymous said...

I continue to wait for some justification for active duty military being included in pre-check, but not retired military or holders of current DoD or LE background investigations. military retirees have at least 20 years documented service to this Nation, pretty much proving their lack of risk. both DoD and LE background investigations should reveal any risk factors. active duty military do not, necessarily, have a background check or any significant length of service. neither citizenship nor a background investigation is required to enlist in the military, in fact there are likely illegal immigrants serving. if it is really about safety, then why are potentially unscreened non-citizens allowed through? sounds like it is just pandering to an admirable group to get PR, not adjusting the rules to ease screening on those who present a lower likelihood of threat.
Let me be clear: pre-911 screening should be the norm. it is all that is required, now that cockpit doors have been reinforced and locked, and flight crews and passengers know that the rules have changed and passivity=death. however, if we are going to continue this massive waste of tax dollars on security theatre, at least have _some_ of the rules make sense.

Anonymous said...

I continue to wait for some justification for active duty military being included in pre-check, but not retired military or holders of current DoD or LE background investigations. military retirees have at least 20 years documented service to this Nation, pretty much proving their lack of risk. both DoD and LE background investigations should reveal any risk factors. active duty military do not, necessarily, have a background check or any significant length of service. neither citizenship nor a background investigation is required to enlist in the military, in fact there are likely illegal immigrants serving. if it is really about safety, then why are potentially unscreened non-citizens allowed through? sounds like it is just pandering to an admirable group to get PR, not adjusting the rules to ease screening on those who present a lower likelihood of threat.
Let me be clear: pre-911 screening should be the norm. it is all that is required, now that cockpit doors have been reinforced and locked, and flight crews and passengers know that the rules have changed and passivity=death. however, if we are going to continue this massive waste of tax dollars on security theatre, at least have _some_ of the rules make sense.

Anonymous said...

@RB gotta take issue with one thing: you said "TSA isn't protecting America, they protect transportation systems." true that is their mission, but they are doing no such thing. their policies cannot be shown to have any connection at all with protection or effectiveness. they are arbitrary forms of security theatre.

Anonymous said...

@SkyWayManAz said...
Level Head most of the public agrees with the purpose of why TSA is there to keep flying safe. The problem is TSA has very different ideas of what is keeping us safe than most people consider normal. Most reasonable people have no issues with TSA preventing guns and weapons from being brought onto aircraft. We start to have a problem when TSA considers everyday harmless items to be weapons.
----------------------------------
most reasonable people understand that there is no such thing as a "gun free zone", and prohibiting weapons is a fruitless endeavor. criminals do not listen to such prohibitions, and law abiding citizens do not need them. TSA is a piece of security theater, imposed on the American public (and others who use our airways) to answer the cry of "something must be done". it is not effective or useful, except to allow career politicians and bureacrats to claim that they are taking action to ease the fears of the public.

Anonymous said...

I continue to wait for some justification for active duty military being included in pre-check, but not retired military or holders of current DoD or LE background investigations. military retirees have at least 20 years documented service to this Nation, pretty much proving their lack of risk. both DoD and LE background investigations should reveal any risk factors. active duty military do not, necessarily, have a background check or any significant length of service. neither citizenship nor a background investigation is required to enlist in the military, in fact there are likely illegal immigrants serving. if it is really about safety, then why are potentially unscreened non-citizens allowed through? sounds like it is just pandering to an admirable group to get PR, not adjusting the rules to ease screening on those who present a lower likelihood of threat.
Let me be clear: pre-911 screening should be the norm. it is all that is required, now that cockpit doors have been reinforced and locked, and flight crews and passengers know that the rules have changed and passivity=death. however, if we are going to continue this massive waste of tax dollars on security theatre, at least have _some_ of the rules make sense.