Transportation Security Administration (TSA) agents discovered 82 firearms over the last week in carry-on bags around the nation.
Of the 82 firearms discovered, 74 were loaded and 31 had a round chambered.
Firearm possession laws vary by state and locality. Travelers bringing firearms to the checkpoint can be arrested and fined up to $11,000.
Travelers should familiarize themselves with state and local firearm laws for each point of travel prior to departure.
- When traveling, comply with the laws concerning possession of firearms as they vary by local, state and international governments.
- If you are traveling internationally with a firearm in checked baggage, please check the U.S. Customs and Border Protection website for information and requirements prior to travel.
- Declare each firearm each time you present it for transport as checked baggage. Ask your airline about limitations or fees that may apply.
- Firearms must be unloaded and locked in a hard-sided container and transported as checked baggage only. Only the passenger should retain the key or combination to the lock unless TSA personnel request the key to open the firearm container to ensure compliance with TSA regulations.
- Firearm parts, including magazines, clips, bolts and firing pins, are prohibited in carry-on baggage, but may be transported in checked baggage.
- Replica firearms, including firearm replicas that are toys, may be transported in checked baggage only.
- Rifle scopes are permitted in carry-on and checked baggage.
(Thinking of traveling with a firearm? Watch this short informative video to learn more! Courtesy of the TSA and YouTube)
Contact the TSA Contact Center with questions you have regarding TSA firearm regulations and for clarification on what you may or may not transport in your carry-on or checked baggage.
United States Code, Title 18, Part 1, Chapter 44, firearm definitions includes: any weapon (including a starter gun) which will, or is designed to, or may readily be converted to expel a projectile by the action of an explosive; the frame or receiver of any such weapon; any firearm muffler or firearm silencer; and any destructive device.
As defined by 49 CFR 1540.5 a loaded firearm has a live round of ammunition, or any component thereof, in the chamber or cylinder or in a magazine inserted in the firearm.
- Ammunition is prohibited in carry-on baggage, but may be transported in checked baggage.
- Firearm magazines and ammunition clips, whether loaded or empty, must be securely boxed or included within a hard-sided case containing an unloaded firearm.
- Read the requirements governing the transport of ammunition in checked baggage as defined by 49 CFR 175.10 (a)(8).
- Small arms ammunition, including ammunition not exceeding .75 caliber and shotgun shells of any gauge, may be carried in the same hard-sided case as the firearm.
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 pocket knives and many other prohibited items too numerous to note.
TSA Security Screening
TSA incorporates unpredictable security measures, both seen and unseen, to accomplish our transportation security mission.
Security measures begin long before you arrive at the airport. TSA works closely with the intelligence and law enforcement communities to share information.
Additional security measures are in place from the time you get to the airport until you get to your destination.
(TSA has 20 integrated components, that we call the Layers of Security, working together to keep you secure. The layers are both seen and unseen and work like a very complex combination safe designed to keep our adversaries at bay and our transportation systems safe. Please take a few minutes to watch this video and learn more about what TSA is doing daily to keep you safe in the skies. Courtesy of the TSA and YouTube)
TSA adjusts processes and procedures to meet the evolving threat and to achieve the highest levels of transportation security. Because of this, you may notice changes in our procedures from time to time.
TSA counts on the traveling public to report unattended bags or packages; individuals in possession of a threatening item; and persons trying to enter a restricted area or similar suspicious activities at airports, train stations, bus stops and ports.
If You See Something, Say Something™. Report suspicious activity to local law enforcement.
(Homeland security begins with hometown security. This PSA seeks to empower everyday citizens to protect their neighbors and the communities they call home by recognizing and reporting suspicious activity. Across the country, we all play a role in keeping each other safe. Courtesy of the Department of Homeland Security and YouTube)
Passenger screening at the airport is part of TSA’s layered approach to security to get you safely to your destination.
TSA’s screening procedures are intended to prevent prohibited items and other threats to transportation security from entering the sterile area of the airport and are developed in response to information on threats to transportation security.
TSA Baggage Screening
Checkpoint and checked baggage screening acts as a deterrent to keep those with ill will from attempting to cause catastrophic damage to an aircraft.
(Learn about TSA’s inline baggage screening systems, which are automated screening equipment that remotely screen and clear a bag without the use of a physical inspection. Courtesy of the TSA and YouTube)
*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.
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.
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.