TSA Week in Review Jan 23rd - 29th: Concealed Items, Inert Explosive Devices and 49 Firearms

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

TSA discovered 49 firearms last week in carry-on bags around the nation. Of the 49 firearms discovered, 41 were loaded and 14 had a round chambered. All of the firearms pictured were discovered last week. See a complete list below.

Concealed Firearm

A traveler’s ankles alarmed after he stepped into the body scanner at Grand Junction (GJT). He had a loaded .40 caliber with a round chambered on one ankle and two magazines on the other. If you hold a conceal carry permit, it’s important you remember two things. 1) Conceal carry permits do not allow you to carry a concealed firearm on the aircraft. 2) Be sure to check your person and belongings prior to travel to ensure you’re not carrying a firearm or ammunition.

IED Training Aids

There were two separate incidents last week where inert improvised explosive device training aids were discovered. Bottles of liquid labeled sulfuric acid, hydrogen peroxide and acetone were discovered in checked bag along with multiple wires and 9-volt batteries at Savannah (SAV). The items were training aids for a military instructor. In a separate event, multiple improvised explosive device components (pictured here) including a container with initiators and detonators, a camera with wires protruding and two books on how to build improvised training devices were discovered in a checked bag at Washington Dulles (IAD). The items were training aids for a Norwegian police instructor. Even if they are inert, replica explosives are strictly prohibited from carry-on and checked bags as they can lead to evacuations.


One razorblade and two knives were discovered in the vest of a traveler’s service dog. Knives and razor blades are not allowed in carry-on bags, but may be packed in checked baggage.

Sword Cane

Two cane swords were discovered this week in carry-on bags at San Antonio (SAT) and Tampa (TPA). All knives and swords are prohibited and concealed items can lead to fines and arrest.

Knives and Throwing Stars

(Clockwise from the top) These items were discovered at: IAH, EWR, HNL, BOI, BWI and BWI

TSA discovered 49 firearms last week in carry-on bags around the nation. Of the 49 firearms discovered, 41 were loaded and 14 had a round chambered.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.

When packed properly, ammunition can be transported in your checked baggage, but it is never permissible to pack ammo in your carry-on bag.

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.

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Bob Burns
TSA Social Media Team

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