While the number of people traveling by plane remains at historic lows nationwide, the number of guns being seized at airport security checkpoints has taken off, prompting concern for the federal government.
The Transportation Security Administration said Monday that its officers found 3 times more firearms inside passengers’ carry-on bags in July than it did the same month last year. For every 1 million people screened by TSA, 15.3 guns were detected compared to 5.1 in July 2019.
“The rate is particularly alarming, given that TSA screened about 75% fewer passengers in July 2020, over the previous year’s volume,” the federal agency wrote in a statement.
“TSA is diligently working to ensure our employees and passengers are safe and secure while traveling during a pandemic, and yet we are noticing a significant increase in loaded firearms coming into checkpoints,” said TSA Administrator David Pekoske. “Travelers must understand that firearms are prohibited items at airports and in the passenger cabins of aircraft. As hard as we are working to mitigate other risks at this time, no one should be introducing new ones.” (Read more from “Amid Declining Air Travel, TSA Is Finding 3 Times More Guns in Carry-On Bags” HERE)