Friday, April 10, 2015

TSA Week in Review: 36 Loaded Firearms, Samurai Sword, and More

Loaded firearm discovered in carry-on bag at OMA
Loaded firearm discovered in carry-on bag at OMA
44 Firearms Discovered This Week – Of the 44 firearms, 36 were loaded and 8 had rounds chambered.
      
Inert Ordnance and Grenades etc. – We continue to find inert grenades and other weaponry on a weekly basis. Please keep in mind that if an item looks like a real bomb, grenade, mine, etc., it is prohibited. When these items are found at a checkpoint or in checked baggage, they can cause significant delays because the explosives detection professionals must respond to resolve the alarm. Even if they are novelty items, you are prohibited from bringing them on the aircraft.

  • Two inert grenades were detected in carry-on bags this week at Chicago O’Hare (ORD), and San Antonio (SAT).
.50 Caliber Rounds and an Inert Grenade (SAT)
.50 Caliber Rounds and an Inert Grenade (SAT)
Artfully Concealed Prohibited Items – Artfully concealed is a term used to describe an item that was intentionally hidden. It could be anything from a knife sewn into the lining of a bag to a sword hidden inside of a walking cane. If a concealed prohibited item is discovered in your bag or on your body, you could be cited and possibly arrested by law enforcement. Here is an example from this week where an artfully concealed item was discovered by our officers.
  • A comb knife was detected in a carry-on bag at Richmond (RIC).
  • A 6-inch knife was detected under the lining of a carry-on bag at San Francisco (SFO).
Comb Knife (RIC)
Comb Knife (RIC)

Miscellaneous Prohibited Items – In addition to all of the other prohibited items we find weekly, officers also regularly find firearm components, realistic replica firearms, bb and pellet guns, airsoft guns, brass knuckles, ammunition, batons and many other prohibited items too numerous to note.


Samurai Sword - A short Samurai sword was discovered in a carry-on bag at La Guardia (LGA). All knives and swords are prohibited from being transported in carry-on bags. However, they may be packed in checked baggage.

Counterclockwise from top, knives discovered at LGA, HNL, CLT, GRK, LGB, OAK, ORD, MDW, LAX, AUS, ORD, PVD & ONT
Counterclockwise from top, items discovered at LGA, HNL, CLT, GRK, LGB, OAK, ORD, MDW, LAX, AUS, ORD, PVD & ONT
4.3 Kilos of Cocaine - As we’ve said before, we’re not looking for illegal narcotics, but we have to report them to law enforcement when discovered. That was the case this week when 4.3 kilos of cocaine were discovered concealed in two shampoo bottles in a checked bag at Atlanta (ATL).

Stun Guns - 18 stun guns were discovered in carry-on bags this week. Four were discovered at Dallas Fort Worth (DFW), two at Denver (DEN), two at Las Vegas (LAS), and the others were discovered at Amarillo (AMA), Atlanta (ATL), Boston (BOS), Chicago Midway (MDW), Dallas Love (DAL), Nashville (BNA), Norfolk (ORF), Oklahoma City (OKC), Reno (RNO), and San Francisco (SFO).


Ammunition Discovered In Carry-on Bags This Week
Ammunition Discovered In Carry-on Bags This Week




Ammunition – When packed properly, ammunition can be transported in your checked baggage, but it is never permissible to pack ammo in your carry-on bag.
  

Clockwise from top left, firearms discovered at ATL, CLT, and DAL
Clockwise from top left, firearms discovered at ATL, CLT, and DAL
Clockwise from top left, firearms discovered at ATL, TUL, GPI, SAT, JAN, and ATL
Clockwise from top left, firearms discovered at ATL, TUL, GPI, SAT, JAN, and ATL

Loaded firearm discovered at PHX
Loaded firearm discovered at PHX

44 Firearms Discovered This Week – Of the 44 firearms, 36 were loaded and 8 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 line 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. 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.

Read our 2014 Year in Review post! If you haven’t read them yet, make sure you check out our year in review posts for 2011, 2012 and 2013.


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Bob Burns

TSA Blog Team

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