You might be surprised to learn that people try to bring loaded guns through TSA checkpoints. In reality, however, thousands of people try to do it every year.
In its yearly roundup of weird shit that looks like it could kill someone, the TSA says it discovered 3,391 guns in carry-on bags in 2016. That’s a whopping 28 per cent increase from 2015's count of 2,653. As the agency’s helpful and depressing infographic shows us, that’s an average of nine firearms every day. How nice!
It doesn’t stop with guns, however. People are really into bringing, uh, replica grenades in their carry on luggage. I’m not really sure why you’d feel the need to to travel with a replica grenade, but to each their own, I guess.
There were also a few swords disguised as canes:
And for all of the wannabe ninjas flying commercial, there were several throwing stars confiscated as well:
My personal favourite, however, were the concealed weapons. In fact, one of those key-knife things actually sounds pretty useful.
From left to right, top to bottom, these are just a few examples of the concealed items that were discovered in carry-on bags last year: Pen knife, belt buckle knife, pen gun, lipstick knife, key knives, comb knife, torch knife, lipstick stun gun, knife hidden in pill bottle and throwing star hidden in a phone case. (Image: TSA)
Of course, while the TSA is apparently quite skilled at detecting firearms and other weapons, it’s lacking in other important areas. In 2016, every traveller’s favourite agency saw itself blasted over horrifically long lines that left thousands of passengers suffering even more than normal. Things got so bad that Delta Airlines even had to install its own security checkpoints.
On the bright side, if you’re looking to fly with your deadly weapon of choice, don’t be dismayed. Luckily for you, the TSA has a handy guide on how to fly with your gun. Here’s to a great 2017! [TSA]