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TSA Week in Review: 42 Firearms Discovered This Week (30 Loaded) November 20 - 26

Monday, November 30, 2015
Discovered firearms

42 firearms were discovered this week in carry-on bags around the nation. Of the 42 firearms discovered, 30 were loaded and 11 had a round chambered. All of the firearms pictured here were discovered this week. See a complete list below.

Discovered Cat eye punching weapon

Four “cat eyes” were discovered this week in carry-on bags around the nation. At first glance, they just look like a cat keychain, but they’re actually a dangerous punching weapon. These items may be packed in your checked luggage, but never in your carry-on bag. The picture above is an example from our archives.

Discovered flare gun and flares

A flare gun and two flares were discovered in a carry-on bag at Palm Springs (PSP). Empty flare guns may be transported in checked luggage, and flares are prohibited altogether.

Discovered Bear Repellent

A reminder about bear repellant: It’s best to buy it at your destination. 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. Five canisters of bear deterrent were discovered in carry-on bags this week.

Discovered Firecracker

This firecracker was discovered in a carry-on bag at the Dickinson Theodore Roosevelt Regional Airport (DIK). Firecrackers and all other fireworks are prohibited from both carry-on and checked bags.

Discovered knives

Clockwise from the top, these knives were discovered in carry-on bags last week at BWI, PHX, AMA, BWI, BTM, PVD, SLC, IAH, BIL and DAL.

Discovered 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. The ammo pictured was discovered in a carry-on bag at IAH.

Table for discovered firearms in carry-on bags list

In addition to all of the other prohibited items we find weekly in carry-on bags, our officers also regularly find firearm components, realistic replica firearms, bb and pellet guns, airsoft guns, brass knuckles, ammunition, batons, stun guns, small pocketknives and many other prohibited items too numerous to note.

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


Submitted by Anonymous on

I am just as worried about the pilots carrying guns as I am about a passenger having a gun. An Air Marshal with a gun is good, but not a pilot.

Submitted by Anonymous on

As always, absolutely nothing you needed your slow, invasive, and ineffective naked body scanners to detect. Meanwhile, how many people suffered physical searches thanks to false alarms on these useless machines?

Why are Curtis Burns and West Cooper unwilling to address, let alone answer, that question?

How many weeks has it been since you last trumpeted something dangerous you found with the naked body scanners?

Submitted by Anonymous on

I continue to wait for some justification for active duty military being included in pre-check, but not retired military or holders of current DoD or LE background investigations. military retirees have at least 20 years documented service to this Nation, pretty much proving their lack of risk. both DoD and LE background investigations should reveal any risk factors. active duty military do not, necessarily, have a background check or any significant length of service. neither citizenship nor a background investigation is required to enlist in the military, in fact there are likely illegal immigrants serving. if it is really about safety, then why are potentially unscreened non-citizens allowed through? sounds like it is just pandering to an admirable group to get PR, not adjusting the rules to ease screening on those who present a lower likelihood of threat.
Let me be clear: pre-911 screening should be the norm. it is all that is required, now that cockpit doors have been reinforced and locked, and flight crews and passengers know that the rules have changed and passivity=death. however, if we are going to continue this massive waste of tax dollars on security theatre, at least have _some_ of the rules make sense. now you're even allowing college kids (kaydets) to endure more reasonable screening, but those who served and sacrificed for 20+ are out of luck.

Submitted by Anonymous on

Anonymous Anonymous said...
I am just as worried about the pilots carrying guns as I am about a passenger having a gun. An Air Marshal with a gun is good, but not a pilot.


You do know the pilots have control of the aircraft, right? That if the pilot was going to cause problems they are already in the cockpit.

What makes the Air Marshal being armed less worrisome than the Pilot? They both have short haircuts so it's not like one or the other has the power of Sampson on their side.

Submitted by James Karalun on

The TSA Blog continues to give the personnel carrying prohibited items the benefit of the doubt. These people carrying illegal/prohibited items have not forgot that the item is in their bag. they are intentionally trying to sneak them on board or think that TSA will not find the item. Arrest the people carrying illegal/prohibited items and fine them the maximum amount allowed by law and they will never forget again. Why make all the other honest people suffer and have to wait while TSA clears the individual.

Submitted by Anonymous on

Great information thanks for posting! This will help make my Holiday flight plans much better!

Submitted by RB on

Heard that TSA screeners were going to stage a protest at DFW and some other large airports the afternoon of 12/3/15.

That is certainly a fine way to get the attention of the public for a group of people who fail 95% of tests.

With TSA's $8,000,000,000.00 (That's EIGHT BILLION DOLLARS) annual budget, more staff than needed, screeners standing around just chatting at checkpoints and in general behaving like over entitled children I don't expect to see much sympathy extended to over-paid federal workers.

Submitted by RB on

No comments posted since 12/1/15. The TSA Blog Team can't seem to work comments even during the work week.

Maybe it's time for this blog to be farmed out to more effecient and capable contractors.

Submitted by Anonymous on

Maybe TSA should hire you, since you know everyone's intent.