BOISE, Idaho – Officers with the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) detected two firearms in the carry-ons of two passengers at two airports in Idaho Thursday morning during routine screening at the security checkpoint.
TSA officers discovered the first firearm around 6 a.m. MDT at Magic Valley Regional Airport (TWF) in Twin Falls. A female passenger ticketed for travel to Salt Lake City International Airport had a .380 caliber Sig Sauer P238 pistol loaded with seven rounds of ammunition in her carry-on bag.
Four hours later, TSA officers at Boise Airport (BOI) found a .40 caliber Sig Sauer gun loaded with 10 rounds of ammunition in the carry-on bag of a male passenger ticketed for travel to Seattle-Tacoma International Airport. It is believed that the two incidents are not related.
In each instance, officers saw the image on the x-ray screen and notified local law enforcement who responded to the security checkpoint. No citation was issued to the passenger at TWF. However, at BOI, the Boise Police Department cited the passenger on state charges.
This is the first firearm TSA has discovered this year in carry-on baggage at TWF; it is the ninth firearm discovered at BOI. Nationwide in 2016, TSA has found more than 2,000 guns in carry-on bags at airport security checkpoints.
In 2015, across the country TSA detected 2,653 firearms in passenger carry-on bags. In 2015, TSA officers at BOI found 15 firearms in carry-on bags at the security checkpoint. No firearms were discovered at TWF in 2015.
Firearms, ammunition, firearm parts and realistic replicas of firearms are always prohibited in carry-on baggage. However, these items can be transported in checked baggage provided the traveler declares them to the airline during the ticket counter check-in process.
In addition to facing local or state criminal charges, TSA reserves the right to levy a civil penalty of up to $7,500 for bringing a dangerous weapon like a firearm to the checkpoint. Each penalty is evaluated on a case-by-case basis.
Additional traveler information specifically related to the commercial air transport of firearms and ammunition can be found here.