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TSA Week in Review: 43 Loaded Firearms, Lipstick Knife, Explosives Training Kit & More

Friday, December 12, 2014
Loaded firearm discovered in carry-on bag at San Antonio (SAT).

Loaded firearm discovered in carry-on bag at San Antonio (SAT).

56 Firearms Discovered This Week - Of the 56 firearms, 43 were loaded and 13 had rounds chambered.

Inert Hand Grenade (LAS) & Explosives Training Kit (RDU)

Inert Hand Grenade (LAS) & Explosives Training Kit (RDU)

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. Read here on why inert items cause problems.

  • An inert military explosives training kit was discovered in a checked bag at Raleigh-Durham (RDU).
  • Four inert grenades were discovered in carry-on bags this week. Two were discovered in separate incidents at Las Vegas (LAS), and the remainder were discovered at Atlanta (ATL) and Salt lake City (SLC).
Belt Buckle Knives (OAK), Lipstick Knife (TPA), Sword Cane (FLL)

Belt Buckle Knives (OAK), Lipstick Knife (TPA), Sword Cane (FLL)

Knife taped to handle mechanism under lining of bag at PHX

Knife taped to handle mechanism under lining of bag at PHX

Artfully Concealed Prohibited Items - It’s important to examine your bags prior to traveling to ensure you are not carrying any prohibited items. If a prohibited item is discovered in your bag or on your body, you could be cited and possibly arrested by law enforcement. Here are a few examples from this week where prohibited items were found by our officers in strange places.

  • A knife was found concealed to the pull handle mechanism under the lining of a carry-on bag at Phoenix (PHX).
  • Two belt buckle knives were discovered in separate incidents at Oakland (OAK).
  • A sword cane was discovered at Ft. Lauderdale (FLL).
  • A lipstick knife was discovered at Tampa (TPA).
Knives discovered

(L-R) Knives discovered at LAS, FAY, NRT & ONT

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.

Stun Guns - Ten stun guns were discovered this week in carry-on bags at Allentown (ABE), Billings (BIL), Chicago Midway (MDW), Dallas Love (DAL), Houston Intercontinental (IAH), Lake Charles (LCH), Las Vegas (LAS), Oklahoma City (OKC), Pueblo (PUB), and San Francisco (SFO).

Ammo discovered in carry-on bag at JFK.

Ammo discovered in carry-on bag at 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.

Loaded firearms

Clockwise from top left: Firearms discovered at PHX, PIT, SAT, BUF, AUS, CLT & SEA

Loaded firearms

Clockwise from top left: Firearms discovered at PHX, BTV, PHX, ATL, PDX & MSY

56 Firearms Discovered This Week - Of the 56 firearms, 43 were loaded and 13 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.

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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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