USA Flag

Official website of the Department of Homeland Security

Transportation Security Administration

TSA Week in Review: 62 Firearms, 12 Cans of Bear Mace and More

Friday, July 31, 2015
Loaded Firearm

62 Firearms Discovered This Week - Of the 62 firearms discovered, 54 were loaded and 25 had a round chambered. The firearm above was discovered in a carry-on bag at ATL.

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.


Three inert/replica grenades were discovered this week. Two were discovered in checked bags at Nashville (BNA) and Milwaukee (MKE) (Pictured) and one was discovered in a carry-on bag at Dallas (DAL). A spent smoke grenade (Pictured) was discovered in a checked bag at Newark (EWR).

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.

Bear Mace

Twelve cans of bear mace were discovered this week in carry-on bags around the nation. Eight were discovered at Anchorage (ANC), two at Billings (BIL) and the remainder at Oakland (OAK) and Seattle (SEA). Bear repellent is prohibited in the cabin of an aircraft. You can pack bear repellent in your checked bag if the volume is less than four ounces and if it has less than a two percent active ingredient of either CS or CN. Most bear repellents exceed these limitations.

Camping fuel.

Four canisters of propane were discovered in carry-on bags in two separate incidents at Anchorage (ANC) this week. Propane is prohibited from both carry-on and checked baggage.

Knives and throwing stars.

Counterclockwise from the top, these items were discovered at: DAL, PHX, TVC, SJC, ONT, PHX, DAL, DEN, RDU, BUF, BZN and ATL

Stun Guns - 26 stun guns were discovered this week in carry-on bags around the nation. Two were discovered at Chattanooga (CHA), two at Dallas/Fort Worth (DFW), two at Las Vegas (LAS), two at Sacramento (SMF), two at Salt Lake City (SLC), and the remainder were discovered at Albuquerque (ABQ), Atlanta (ATL), Baltimore (BWI), Charleston (CHS), Chicago O'Hare (ORD), Houston Intercontinental (IAH), Killeen (GRK), Memphis (MEM), Minneapolis/St. Paul (MSP), Oakland (OAK), Phoenix (PHX), Portland (PDX), Reno (RNO), San Francisco (SFO), Seattle (SEA), and Tallahassee (TLH).

Loaded firearms.

Clockwise from the top left, these firearms were discovered in carry-on bags at: ATL, UNV, ATL, BNA, LIT and SMF

Loaded firearms.

Clockwise from the top left, these firearms were discovered in carry-on bags at: SBN, IAH, PIT, TPA, MEM and JAN

Loaded firearms.

Top to bottom these firearms were discovered in carry-on bags at: SAT, SAT and SNA

Table for discovered firearms in carry-on bags list

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 $11,000. 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.

*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.

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.

Follow @TSA on Twitter and Instagram!

Bob Burns
TSA Social Media Team

If you have a travel related issue or question that needs an immediate answer, you can contact us by clicking here.


Submitted by Anonymous on

West says:

"Reading comprehension was always one of my better subjects"

So was smug condescension while being completely WRONG about subjects.

But being in the TSA means never having to admit you're wrong or say you're sorry, it seems. If reality contradicts the mighty West and Bobby, it's obviously REALITY that's in the wrong...

Submitted by GSOLTSO on

Sandra sez - "Lots of airlines have flights with single numbers, West. You need to update yourself. It seems Susan's was right on target when she read Richardson's post as being the flight number. You owe her an apology. "

You are correct, I was mistaken about the single digit flight numbers, I apologize for being wrong. However, flight #3 linked to is a domestic flight, not international. Have any of you found a flight #3 that was from the US to an international destination? (seriously, can any of you guys find one?)

Anon sez - "Interesting that West approved the above comment but wasn't man enough to apologize or admit his error."

Wow. As pointed out previously, we have other job duties that we have to take care of in addition to the blog.

Anon sez - "Are we sure West is an actual person and not some form of chatterbox? I mean, I've had better conversations with Eliza ;)"

Of course I am an actual person, Skynet is still in Alpha testing. Apparently, we have both had better conversations with Eliza!

Anon sez - "But being in the TSA means never having to admit you're wrong or say you're sorry, it seems. If reality contradicts the mighty West and Bobby, it's obviously REALITY that's in the wrong..."

Obviously, you are not a long time reader, as I have apologized many times before, and I am certain that I will be doing so again in the future. We all make mistakes from time to time.

TSA Blog Team

Submitted by Anonymous on

Anonymous said...And why won't TSA answer the long standing question of why confiscated LGA's are tossed in common trash bins right at the checkpoints instead of being treated as potential explosives? Aren't LGA's taken because they could be weapons? Yet TSA treats these items as completely harmless which begs the question, does TSA already know that these LGA's are actually harmless and has no good reason to continue the confiscation of these items?

im guessing this has been answered about 20 times. Look back at old post for your answer.August 6, 2015 at 10:03 AM

I looked, not answered!

OK, Ill answer this again. When liquids are surrendered to TSA they are put in a standard trash can or a HAZ MAT container. Most liquids such as water, soda and other unopened containers probably do not get tested when surrendered. The reason TSA does not test them and allow them is because if TSA allowed all tested and cleared liquids to travel, they would be for ever testing water bottles. TSA does not have the man power or the time testing water bottles. It would be absurd to think they should. They have two options, only allow those needed liquids after testing or allow all liquids to go un-tested. its really more of a practicality policy. It would not be feasible, practical, timely or safe to do otherwise.

Submitted by Anonymous on

Bold TSApologist, your answer had no value or credible information because you have stated on this blotter that you are not a TSA employee.

Blotter team, will YOU ever answer?

Bold TSApologist, attempting to "answer" a legitimate question by the American public as if you are a TSA employee is intentionally deceptive. Just because you know a TSA employee does not make you an expert on terrorism, securiity, or even the TSA.