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TSA Week in Review - 51 Firearms Discovered This Week (And One Unloaded Cannon)

Friday, October 24, 2014
gun with bullets



Loaded firearm discovered at MLB 51 Firearms Discovered This Week - Of the 51 firearms, 39 were loaded and 13 had rounds chambered.

Cannon Barrel - You can add this one to the “items we don’t see every day” category. An unloaded cannon barrel was discovered along with a passenger’s checked items at the Kahului Airport (OGG). Our officers have discovered cannonballs in the past, but this is the first cannon I can recall.

discovered cannon barrel

Cannon Barrel (OGG)

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 resolve the alarm to determine the level of threat. Even if they are novelty items, you cannot bring them on a plane. Read here on why inert items cause problems.

  • An inert hand grenade was discovered in a carry-on bag at Dallas Fort Worth (DFW).

Artfully Concealed Prohibited Items - It’s important to examine your bags prior to traveling to ensure you are not carrying prohibited items. 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 concealed six-inch knives were detected in a traveler’s shoes at Tallahassee (TLH).
discovered knives in boots

Knives in boot at (TLH) 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:

  • A Miami (MIA) traveler informed the airline ticketing representative that he had C4 explosives in his checked bag. His bag was located and after all was said and done, no C4 was discovered.
discovered marijuana

Marijuana (SFO)

Stun Guns - 12 stun guns were discovered in carry-on bags this week at Atlanta (ATL),Billings (BIL),Buffalo (BUF),Burbank (BUR),Columbia (CAE),Kansas City (MCI),Los Angeles (LAX),Northwest Florida (VPS),Oakland (OAK),Orlando (MCO),Phoenix (PHX),and San Diego (SAN).

Marijuana at SFO - Several plastic-wrapped packs of marijuana totaling six pounds were discovered in a carry-on bag at San Francisco (SFO). Our officers are looking primarily for weapons, but when they come across drugs, they must be reported to local law enforcement.

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 many other prohibited items too numerous to note.

discovered knives

Top - Bottom: Knives Discovered at LAS, LAS & JFK

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.

discovered ammunition

Ammunition discovered in carry-on bag at JFK

discovered loaded firearms

(Clockwise from top left) Loaded Firearms Discovered in Carry-on Bags at: RNO, DAL, FLL & AUS

table of firearms discovered in carry-on bags

*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.

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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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