(Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport) A total of 542 firearms were discovered in carry-on luggage at all Georgia airports in 2021, according to the Transportation Security Administration (TSA). 542 is more than twice as many firearms seized at airports in 2020 and over 100 more than in 2019. 507 of the 542 firearms were found during screenings at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport. Over 2,350 firearms were discovered at security checkpoints at 234 airports in the United States, either on travelers or in carry-ons. A loaded gun is not allowed through the airport security checkpoint, only checked luggage can carry weapons on a flight, and a description of the luggage must be provided to the airline before traveling.
The top five airports are:
- Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport
- Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport
- George Bush Intercontinental Airport in Houston
- Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport
- Denver International Airport
If you are planning to travel with a firearm at the airport, here is what you need to know per the TSA guidelines:
- Unload the weapon. It is mandatory to unload and lock firearms in a hard-sided container, and to transport them only as checked baggage. Unless TSA staff request the key to open the firearm container to ensure compliance with TSA regulations, the passenger should only retain the key or combination to the lock. Including TSA-approved locks, you may use any lock brand or type to secure your firearm case.
- If you present each firearm as checked baggage, it needs to be declared. Fill out any applicable forms. Find out if there are any limitations or fees involved.
- In the event that you plan on checking in a firearm internationally, check the U.S. Customs and Border Protection website for information and requirements.
- If you bring an unloaded firearm with accessible ammunition to the security checkpoint, you will be subject to the same fine as if you brought a loaded firearm.
- Carry-on baggage is not allowed to contain firearm parts such as magazines, clips, bolts, and firing pins, but checked baggage can.
- Only checked baggage is allowed for replica firearms, including firearm replicas that are toys.
- Riflescopes can be carried onboard and checked in with the luggage.
If you have any questions, please contact your airline and/or the TSA.