TSA screened 14.6 million passengers and discovered 78 firearms in carry-on bags at airports from Dec. 10 through 16. Of the 78 firearms discovered, 63 were loaded and 28 had a round chambered. Bringing a firearm through the security checkpoint may result in a civil penalty of up to $13,333. Repeat violations will result in higher penalties.
Learn how to properly travel with your firearms in checked baggage. Note that airline policies may differ from TSA’s, so we strongly recommend travelers check with their airline prior to traveling. Travelers should also review state and local firearm laws at both their departure and destination, as they vary.
All of the firearms pictured were discovered from Dec. 10 to 16.
The bottle of lighter fluid on the left was discovered in a carry-on bag of a passenger traveling from Seattle-Tacoma Washington International Airport on Dec. 12. Pictured on the right, fireworks were discovered in the carry-on bag of a passenger traveling from Orlando International Airport on Dec. 13. Fireworks, lighter fluid and Christmas crackers are not allowed in carry-on or checked bags. Packing these in your bag may lead to a civil penalty or arrest. For a list of flammables, visit our What Can I Bring? page.
We’d like to recognize the actions San Diego International Airport Officer Martino. On Dec. 13, while on break and on the public side of the airport, Martino intervened in a dangerous situation by stopping a man from choking a woman. Law enforcement responded and placed the man under arrest. We are grateful for Martino’s quick response. In case you were wondering, Martino went back to work and completed his shift after the incident.
Yeager Airport in West Virginia was busy on Dec. 11, when they discovered two firearms on the same day. Supervisor Thomas, pictured on the top, has been with TSA for over 16 years and discovered his third firearm, an unloaded .380 Lorcin. Officer Fink has worked as an officer for 11 years and discovered his second firearm, a loaded .38 Smith & Wesson revolver. Including both of these finds, Yeager Airport officers have stopped six firearms from boarding planes this year.
Happy Holidays from TSA! On the left is a Christmas tree decorated by our explosives specialists team at Albuquerque International Sunport. On the right is our Southwest Florida International Airport TSA Canine Alphie. Alphie wanted to let Santa know that he was a good boy this year, so he took this photo to help promote awareness for the Combined Federal Campaign in our annual canine photo contest.
Check out our AskTSA Blog for answers to your top travel related questions!
TSA screening procedures prevent prohibited items and other threats to transportation security from entering the sterile area of the airport. Along with the finds highlighted in this post, our officers regularly find firearm components, realistic replica firearms, bb and pellet guns, airsoft guns, brass knuckles, ammunition, batons, stun guns, small pocket knives and many other dangerous items.
In most cases, the traveler forgets that the item is in their bag. Unfortunately, this happens far too often. Our goal in sharing these finds is to remind travelers to check their bags and the rules before heading to the airport.