5 guns in 4 days: TSA intercepts alarming number of guns at Detroit Airport

Transportation Security Administration (TSA) officers at Detroit Metropolitan Airport (DTW)  have prevented five handguns from being carried onboard in separate incidents since March 30, 2023.

TSA reported that on March 30, 2023, one passenger asked a TSA officer if he could give her something he forgot before entering a body scanner. The passenger then handed the officer his firearm. 

In the other four incidents, images of the firearms were discovered on the X-ray screen during a routine screening of carry-on luggage. Three out of the four incidents occurred within 90 minutes (between 6:20 a.m. and 7:45 a.m.) on March 31, 2023. The fourth incident occurred on April 2, 2023. 

All of the firearms were loaded.  According to the TSA, airport police responded and confiscated the firearms involved in each of the incidents. 

TSA also said that although more than a dozen guns are stopped at airport checkpoints across the country each day, it is unusual for DTW to have so many intercepted in such a short period of time.

“Although it’s extremely troubling that so many passengers continue to make this careless, expensive mistake, the general public should feel safer knowing that the TSA officers in Detroit continue to perform their jobs exceptionally well and are stopping these firearms from going past the checkpoint,” Michigan TSA acting federal security director Bill Byrne said in a statement.

“When dangerous items such as loaded guns are brought to a security checkpoint, it represents a serious security and safety concern. Remember that a concealed carry permit or enrollment in the TSA PreCheck program are not exemptions from this policy,” Byrne added. 

Including the recent five, 28 firearms have been detected at DTW so far this year. 

In 2022, 100 firearms were detected at DTW security checkpoints, and 94 were stopped in 2021.

Those traveling in the coming long weekend are advised to review the TSA’s official guidelines for transporting firearms and ammunition

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