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TSA Week in Review - 29 Loaded Firearms, Black Powder, and Other Items of Note Discovered in Carry-on Bags

Friday, March 14, 2014
Black Powder Discovered at (GRR)

Black Powder Discovered at (GRR)

Black Powder Discovered: A traveler at Grand Rapids (GRR) had a storage tube in his carry-on bag containing four cubes each with 100 grains of black powder. He stated that he uses the black powder for muzzle loading and forgot to remove it from his bag. This is a good example of why it’s always important to double check your bags prior to traveling.

Loaded Gun Discovered at (MIA)

Loaded Gun Discovered at (MIA)

35 Firearms Discovered This Week - Of the 35 firearms, 29 were loaded and 11 had rounds chambered. See a complete list and more photos at the bottom of this post. (Updated on 3/20/14 to remove three duplicates)

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 are found at a checkpoint or in checked baggage, they can cause significant delays in checkpoint screening. While they may be novelty items, you cannot bring them on a plane. Read here on why inert items cause problems.

  • Five inert/replica grenades were discovered in carry-on bags this week. Two were discovered at Wichita (ICT), and the remainder were discovered at Las Vegas (LAS), San Diego (SAN) and San Antonio (SAT).
Grenades Discovered at (L-R) SAT, SAN, LAS, ICT

Grenades Discovered at (L-R) SAT, SAN, LAS, ICT

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.

  • A concealed double edge knife inside a comb was discovered at San Francisco (SFO).
  • Five credit card knives were discovered this week. Two were discovered at Grand Forks (GFK), and the remainder were discovered at Charleston (CHS), Kansas City (MCI), and Rapid City (RAP).
Comb Dagger (SFO) & Credit Card Knife (MCI)

Comb Dagger (SFO) & Credit Card Knife (MCI)

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…

Starter Pistol (SFO), Throwing Stars (JFK), Throwing Star (BNA), Switchblade (HSV), Kitchen Knife (CLT)

Starter Pistol (SFO), Throwing Stars (JFK), Throwing Star (BNA), Switchblade (HSV), Kitchen Knife (CLT)

Stun Guns - 13 stun guns were discovered this week in carry-on bags around the nation. Two were discovered at Birmingham (BHM), two more at Las Vegas (LAS), and the remainder were discovered at Albuquerque (ABQ), Anchorage (ANC), Columbus (CMH), Denver (DEN), Fargo (FAR), Helena (HLN), Oklahoma City (OKC), San Francisco (SFO), and San Jose (SJC).

Ammunition Discovered at (BNA)

Ammunition Discovered at (BNA)

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

Firearms Discovered This Week in Carry-On Bags

Guns Discovered at (T-B / L-R) CPR, MSY, TPA

Guns Discovered at (T-B / L-R) CPR, MSY, TPA

guns discovered

Guns Discovered at (L-R / T-B) SAT, DAL, CHA, FLL, CLT

35 Firearms Discovered This Week - Of the 35 firearms, 29 were loaded and 11 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.

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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.

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