If you are going to go through TSA screening at an airport this holiday season, don’t try to take a hand grenade onboard your flight!
Thanks to STLToday for the heads-up.
ST. LOUIS – Officers with the U.S. Transportation Security Administration have confiscated 50 firearms at checkpoints at St. Louis Lambert International Airport this year – and other items such as an inert grenade and brass knuckles. So far this year, TSA officers have seized 64 firearms at Kansas City International Airport, 15 at Springfield-Branson National Airport, one at Columbia Regional Airport and one at Joplin Regional Airport. Statewide, that’s a total of 131 guns stopped so far this year at Missouri airports, compared to 116 in all of 2018, according to Sari Koshetz, a spokesperson for the Transportation Security Administration. Since 2013, 671 firearms have been intercepted by TSA officers at airports in Missouri.
Koshetz said the number of firearms found at checkpoints increases during the holiday travel season. “Unfortunately, we do see an escalation in the number of guns during the holiday period, due to the increase in the sheer volume of travelers and also because some of the passengers do not fly very often and may not be focusing on what’s inside their bag when they head to the airport,” Koshetz said.
Beyond guns, TSA has uncovered some unusual items. One security screening lane was closed for about 30 minutes at Lambert on Feb. 23 when a passenger packed what the TSA refers to as “Grandpa’s grenade” in a carry-on bag. It was inert. Grenades, real or fake, aren’t allowed in carry-on or checked bags, the TSA said.
Brass knuckles with a blade attachment were discovered at Lambert on Feb. 15. And TSA officers found a hookah, a water pipe, that had been fashioned into a brass knuckles weapon, on Feb. 15 at Lambert. TSA officers found two high-capacity magazines hidden in an infant’s toy at Orlando International Airport this month. The toy and the box were “made to appear to be factory sealed,”
“Our officers are very adept and well-trained at locating threat items that have been camouflaged as everyday items,” such as a stun gun that looks like a flashlight, Koshetz said.
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