Two Florida Airports Feature in the U.S. Top 10 for Most Handguns Discovered in Luggage, According to TSA

Toby Hazlewood

Passengers 'forget' they've got loaded guns in their bags?
Gun in bagShutterstock

A recent set of TSA data reported on April 16 shows once again that two Florida airports are in the U.S. top 10 for the most handguns confiscated at TSA checkpoints. Atlanta airport in Georgia consistently tops the list, but Orlando International Airport and Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport are also consistently featured in the list too.

According to the TSA, 195 guns have been found in passenger baggage so far in 2022, with 40 of those being discovered in luggage at Orlando. A significant number of guns have also been confiscated from passenger bags at Fort Lauderdale (36 guns) and at Miami International Airport too (19 guns discovered to-date).

A consistent trend

TSA data monitored year-on-year suggests that it's an ongoing problem, with the same airports seeing the highest numbers of guns discovered each year.

A 2021 tweet from the TSA showed that Atlanta again topped the list with 507 out of nearly 6,000 firearms intercepted at the Georgia airport.

Perhaps most alarmingly is that 86% of all guns discovered by the TSA were also loaded at the time according to their data.

Transporting guns 'by mistake'?

It's notable that most of the airports where guns are frequently discovered are in states where concealed carry is legal - and there are over 20 such states now after Georgia, Indiana and Ohio recently signed so-called constitutional carry into law.

In Florida meanwhile, Governor Ron DeSantis has apparently demanded that state legislators reconsider legalizing constitutional carry after it was rejected during the state's legislative season.

Many of the cases where citizens are discovered to be transporting their guns in luggage could well have happened by mistake, rather than through malice.

That was apparently the case last year when Rep. Madison Cawthorn of North Carolina tried to board a flight with a handgun in his carry-on bag which was apparently left in there 'by mistake' according to the Republican politician.

Whatever leads to passengers leaving guns in their luggage, the TSA seem primed to detect and seize them, which must surely be a good thing for passenger safety.

Have you ever witnessed a passenger having a gun found in their luggage by the TSA? Do you believe that security checks at airports are an annoyance or necessary to protect passenger safety? Let me know in the comments section below.

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