TSA reports record high gun intercepts

TSA airport security checkpoint

The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) intercepted 6,542 guns at U.S. airport checkpoints last year.

Security officers say the record doesn’t necessarily indicate heightened terrorist attempts but reflects the fact that more Americans are carrying firearms. Officers have seized more weapons every year since 2010 — except for 2020 when the pandemic disrupted air travel. 

Why is the TSA worried? Almost 90% of last year’s intercepted guns were loaded. The TSA has said firearms in checkpoints cause unnecessary risk and delay to everyone at the checkpoint. Those who possess a firearm at a TSA checkpoint will lose their eligibility for TSA Pre-check and may face a fine of nearly $15,000, gun confiscation, or even arrest—not to mention a missed flight. 

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To legally fly with a firearm, the TSA advises travelers to follow state and local laws. The TSA also requires that the gun be unloaded, locked in a container, declared ahead of time and transported in checked baggage only.

This story originally appeared in WORLD. © 2023, reprinted with permission. All rights reserved.

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