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The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) announced that it broke a record in 2023. Unfortunately, it involved passengers trying to bring firearms through security in record numbers last year.
Throughout 2023, the TSA found a total of 6,737 firearms at airport security checkpoints and around 93% were loaded. This represents the highest total in the agency’s history and averages at 18 per day. Firearms were found in 265 airports and Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport (DFW) had the highest total. More than 858 million passengers were screened last year, which means the agency intercepted 7.8 firearms per million passengers. This represents a drop from the 8.6 per million passengers seen in 2022.
TSA Administrator, David Pekoske, said:
We are still seeing far too many firearms at TSA checkpoints, and what’s particularly concerning is the amount of them loaded, presenting an unnecessary risk to everyone at the TSA checkpoint. Firearms and ammunition are strictly prohibited in carry-on baggage. Passengers are only allowed to travel with an unloaded firearm, and only if they pack it properly in a locked, hard-sided case in their checked baggage and first declare it to the airline at the check-in counter.”
When a firearm is found, law enforcement is contacted. In addition to any action taken by them (including possible arrest), the TSA fines passengers who bring firearms to checkpoints with civil penalties up to approximately $15,000, revokes TSA PreCheck® eligibility for at least five years, and may conduct enhanced screening to ensure there are no further threats present.
Anthony’s Take: Leave the guns at home or properly check them into your checked bags (following TSA protocols). Kudos to the TSA for finding all of these firearms (some naysayers might wonder how many slipped through, but it’s good knowing this many were found).
(Featured Image Credit: TSA.)
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