TSA’s safety reminder as millions of Americans are cleared to fly again

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The Transportation Security Administration had a reminder for travelers as people return to airports. It came as The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention updated its guidance Friday to say fully vaccinated people can travel within the U.S. without getting tested for the coronavirus or going into quarantine afterward.

The TSA said officers at Missouri airports found a total of 85 firearms in travelers’ carry-on luggage in 2020. This year, agents have already confiscated 14 guns at KCI checkpoints. Each weapon was located during routine screening at airport security checkpoints. Because of that, the TSA held a reminder to show travelers the right way and wrong way to travel with a gun.

People can take guns with them when they fly, but the weapons can’t be in carry-on bags, according to the TSA.

“The biggest mistake people make is bringing it to the security checkpoint. We don’t have an issue with folks taking a firearm with them when they travel but we for obvious reasons don’t want it accessible during the flight,” Mark Howell, Spokeperson for the TSA, said. “So as long as you pack it properly and declare it to the airline. It goes underneath the aircraft and you get it at your destination. No safety concerns or issues there.”

TSA said the correct way to travel with a weapon is:

  • Make sure it’s unloaded
  • Put it inside a hard sided case with padding
  • Ammunition also needs to be loaded in the case
  • Lock the case
  • Make sure your contact information is on the outside of the case
  • Check it at the ticket counter with your luggage

Confiscated weapons are held by airport police, as long as they are legal. The gun is held for a certain amount of time until you return to claim it. Guns that aren’t claimed are used for training.

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