TSA Week in Review - 45 Loaded Firearms, Concealed Firearms on Three Passengers, Inert WWI Artillery Shells, and More

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Friday, April 11, 2014
Concealed Firearms (L-R) CVG & SAT

Concealed Firearms (L-R) CVG & SAT

Concealed Firearms- Normally when our officers discover firearms, they’re inside carry-on bags. This week, three loaded firearms were discovered on the passenger.

  • A 380. caliber firearm loaded with five rounds and one chambered was discovered strapped to a passenger’s ankle after walking through a metal detector at Cincinnati (CVG).
  • A loaded 380. caliber firearm with a round chambered was discovered in the rear pocket of a San Antonio (SAT) passenger during Advanced Imaging Technology (AIT) screening.
  • A 380. caliber firearm loaded with five rounds was discovered after a passenger walked through a metal detector at Dallas - Ft. Worth (DFW).

51 Firearms Discovered This Week - Of the 51 firearms, 45 were loaded and 20 had rounds chambered. See a complete list and more photos at the bottom of this post.

Seal Deterrent (ADQ)

Seal Deterrent (ADQ)

Seal Deterrent - A Seal deterrent was discovered in a passenger’s carry-on bag at Kodiak (ADQ). - A seal bomb is a small explosive device resembling a firecracker that is used underwater in order to frighten mammals away from fishing grounds.

Burning Book (PHX)

Burning Book (PHX)

Burning Book - This magic gag item was discovered in a checked bag at Phoenix (PHX). While the safety of a burning book in baggage can surely be questioned, our officers were concerned for other reasons. It resembles an improvised explosive device.

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 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 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.

  • Two inert artillery shells were discovered in a checked bag at Chicago O’Hare (ORD). Two minors were returning from Europe and had found the shells at a French WWI era artillery range.
  • Four inert/replica/novelty grenades were discovered in carry-on bags this week. Two were discovered in Atlanta (ATL), and the others were found at Baltimore (BWI), and Oklahoma City (OKC).
Inert WWI Artillery Shells (ORD) - Inert Grenade (BWI)

Inert WWI Artillery Shells (ORD) - Inert Grenade (BWI)

Artfully Concealed Prohibited Items -It’s important to examine your bags prior to traveling to ensure prohibited items are not inside. If a prohibited item is discovered in your bag or on your body, you could be cited and 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.

  • Two razor blades were detected inside the shoe and wallet of a Cincinnati (CVG) passenger.
  • A 6-inch saw blade was detected, concealed inside a bible at Orlando (MCO).
  • Three box cutter blades were detected concealed in a shoe inside the carry-on bag of a Baton Rouge passenger.
  • A cell phone stun gun was discovered at Omaha (OMA).
  • A comb knife was discovered at John Wayne (SNA).
  • A lipstick stun gun was discovered at Detroit (DTW).
  • A shocking device was detected inside a cane at Billings (BIL).
Saw in Bible (MCO), Razors in Shoe (BTR), Stun Cane (BIL), Comb Knife (SNA)

Saw in Bible (MCO), Razors in Shoe (BTR), Stun Cane (BIL), Comb Knife (SNA)

Unfolded Credit Card Knife (MCI)

Unfolded Credit Card Knife (MCI)

Nine credit card knives were discovered this week. Three were discovered at Kansas City (MCI), three more at Oakland (OAK), and the remainder were discovered at Central Wisconsin (CWA),Minot (MOT),and Sonoma (STS).Check out this blog post for more information on credit card knives.

Stun Guns Discovered at (L-R) OMA, STT, DTW

Stun Guns Discovered at (L-R) OMA, STT, DTW

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…

Ammunition (PHX)

Ammunition (PHX)

Stun Guns - Fourteen stun guns were discovered this week in carry-on bags around the nation at Anchorage (ANC), Atlanta (ATL), Bellingham (BLI), Birmingham (BHM), Detroit (DTW), Fort Lauderdale (FLL), Key West (EYW), Las Vegas (LAS), Melbourne (MLB), Nashville (BNA), Omaha (OMA), Sacramento (SMF), Saint Thomas (STT), and San Francisco (SFO).

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.

Firearms Discovered This Week in Carry-On Bags

discovered guns

Guns Discovered at - L-R / T-B: ABQ, LAX, RSW, GSP, BZN, GSO, GSP

discovered firearms

Guns Discovered at - L-R / T-B: ICT, LAS, CRP

51 Firearms Discovered This Week - Of the 51 firearms, 45 were loaded and 20 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 $7,500.00. 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

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