COLUMBUS, Ohio – Transportation Security Administration (TSA) officers prevented a handgun from making its way onboard an airplane at John Glenn Columbus International Airport (CMH) Tuesday.
The incident occurred around 4:30 p.m., and TSA officials immediately alerted Columbus Regional Airport Authority Police. The firearm was not loaded, and the safety was engaged. An officer responded to the checkpoint, cited the traveler, and confiscated the weapon.
“Summer travel is ramping up, but our TSA officers continue to do a fantastic job preventing firearms from entering the secure area of the airport,” Ohio TSA Federal Security Director Donald Barker said.
“This passenger’s actions slowed down the security screening process for travelers who were coming through the security checkpoint around the same time. With the number of people departing John Glenn Columbus International Airport this summer, please be aware of what you have in your carry-on luggage.”
TSA issues civil penalties to travelers who bring guns to a checkpoint. A typical first offense for carrying a loaded handgun into a checkpoint is $4,100. The complete list of civil penalties is on the TSA website. If a traveler with a gun is a member of TSA PreCheck®, that individual will lose their TSA PreCheck privileges for a period of time.
This is the 13th firearm detected at CMH this year. A total of 29 firearms were detected at CMH security checkpoints in 2019, and 24 last year.
Passengers are permitted to travel with firearms in checked baggage if they are unloaded, packed separately from ammunition in a locked hardback case and declared at the airline check-in counter. Firearm possession laws vary by state and locality. Travelers should check for firearm laws in the jurisdictions they are flying to and from.
TSA has details on how to properly travel with a firearm posted on its website. Travelers should also contact their airline as they may have additional requirements for traveling with firearms and ammunition.