The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) intercepted a record number of guns at airports in 2022 with the total coming out to more than 6,500. The Associated Press reported the exact figure to be 6,542, which is “roughly 18 a day.” The TSA also claimed that in nearly every instance a gun was confiscated, the person said they forgot the gun was in their bag or forgot to remove the firearm. The AP listed the top airports for gun interceptions in 2022 as “Dallas, Austin and Houston in Texas; three airports in Florida; Nashville, Tennessee; Atlanta; Phoenix; and Denver.”
According to Fox:
TSA administrator David Pekoske told The AP that guns tend to be intercepted at bigger airports in areas with laws more friendly to carrying a gun.
Punishment ranges from arrest to just having the gun confiscated. Local and state laws play a major role in determining repercussions. Sometimes flyers are allowed to give the gun to another person that is not traveling with them and continue on their way.
Unloaded guns can be put in checked bags, but proper procedures must be followed. So far this year, TSA agents have stopped 14 firearms from being carried onto planes, and 13 of those guns were loaded.
“If you are going to travel with your gun it must be in your checked bag but be sure you know exactly what the gun laws are on each side of your trip,” said TSA Federal Security Director Arden Hudson. “Guns may not be legal to transport even in checked baggage in some jurisdictions.”
TSA administrator David Pekosk has his own theory for the rise in airport gun confiscations, stating, “What we see in our checkpoints really reflects what we’re seeing in society, and in society there are more people carrying firearms nowadays.”