WASHINGTON — During the first three quarters of 2023, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) intercepted 5,072 firearms at airport security checkpoints, and at the current rate, the agency will surpass last year’s record 6,542 firearms prevented from getting onboard aircraft.

In the third quarter, which ended Sept. 30, Transportation Security Officers (TSOs) stopped 1,820 firearms at checkpoints. The total represents an average 19.8 firearms per day at TSA checkpoints of which more than 94% were loaded.

“Passengers may travel with a firearm, but it must be in their checked baggage,” said TSA Administrator David Pekoske. “Firearms are only permitted in checked baggage, unloaded in a locked hard-sided case and must be declared to the airline when checking the bag at the ticket counter. Firearms are prohibited at security checkpoints, in the secure area of an airport or in the passenger cabin of an aircraft even if a passenger has a concealed carry permit or is in a constitutional carry jurisdiction.”  

If a passenger brings a firearm to the TSA checkpoint, the TSO will contact local law enforcement to safely unload and take possession of the firearm. The law enforcement officer may also arrest or cite the passenger, depending on local law. TSA may impose a civil penalty up to almost $15,000, and passengers who present with a firearm at a security checkpoint will lose TSA PreCheck® eligibility for five years.  

TSA recommends that passengers pack a carry-on bag that is empty to ensure no firearms are unintentionally left in their travel bag. 

To view the complete list of penalties, go to TSA.gov. 

Originally published by the Transportation Security Agency. Click HERE for source. 

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