Keep Your Gun at All Times During the Flight? US Registers New High in Seized Firearms at Airports
As lax as American gun laws are, one still can't board a plane with a loaded gun for safety reasons. Attempting this in the US might result in a hefty fine ranging between $3,000 and $10,000.
American airports have confiscated some 5,674 guns in 2021, when their owners tried to cross security checkpoints, the US Transportation Security Agency (TSA) has reported. This number is a new high, according to the TSA, with the previous record set in 2019 with 4,400 firearms confiscated.
TSA Administrator David Pekoske struggled to explain the growth in the number of these confiscations, especially considering that it might cost the perpetrators between $3,000 and $10,000 in fines.
"The reason? I think there's just more firearm carriage in the country. That's the best answer I can give you", Pekoske said.
The largest number of confiscations happened at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, while Dallas-Fort Worth and Houston occupied second and third place. In the absolute majority of cases the confiscated firearm was loaded, the TSA data shows.
24 March 2021, 14:16 GMT
The Hartfield-Jackson International Airport had a gun-related incident just last month. Kenny Wells, 42, "lunged" for his gun after security there asked him to leave his bag alone and let them search it for a potential "prohibited item".
The gun went off, prompting false "active shooter" reports. The gun's discharge did not result in any casualties, but triggered panic at the airport that left three people with minor injuries.