The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) recently indicated officers detected twice as many firearms per million passengers screened at airport security checkpoints nationwide in 2020 compared to 2019.
“I commend our officers for their commitment to TSA’s security mission by identifying and stopping these weapons at the TSA checkpoints,” Senior Official Performing the Duties of TSA Administrator Darby LaJoye said. “Firearms are strictly prohibited onboard planes in the passenger cabin. Bringing a firearm to a TSA security checkpoint poses a serious risk to TSA officers and passenger safety, and doing so may result in significant fines or arrest.”
Throughout last year personnel caught approximately 10 firearms per million passengers screened in comparison to about five firearms per million passengers screened in 2019 – adding TSA officers discovered a total of 3,257 firearms on passengers or in their carry-on bags at checkpoints, although total passengers screened in 2020 fell by 500 million versus 2019 amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Officials said 83 percent of the firearms caught in 2020 were loaded, while TSA officers stopped a record 4,432 firearms in 2019. And 87 percent of those were loaded.
The agency advises travelers to become familiar with state and local firearm laws for each point of travel before departure to ensure they are transporting guns following applicable laws.