Updated Jan 17, 2023 - World

TSA finds record number of firearms at security checkpoints in 2022

A TSA agent inspects a traveler's luggage at the Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County Airport in Michigan on June 12, 2021. Photo: Matthew Hatcher/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Transportation Security Administration officers intercepted a record number of firearms brought by passengers to airport security checkpoints in 2022, the agency said Tuesday.

Driving the news: TSA stopped 6,542 firearms last year — more than 88% of which were loaded.

By the numbers: That's more than the previous record of 5,972 firearms detected in 2021, marking a nearly 10% increase.

Of note: The record comes as airplane travel is climbing toward pre-pandemic levels.

  • More people went through TSA security checkpoints this year than in the last two years, per TSA data.

Be smart: Firearms are never allowed in carry-on bags at any TSA security checkpoint, even if a passenger has a concealed weapon permit.

  • The TSA increased the maximum fine last month for a firearms violation to $14,950 — that's up from $13,910.
  • Depending on state or local law in the airport’s location, passengers who bring firearms to a checkpoint may be arrested.

What they're saying: "When a passenger brings a firearm to the checkpoint, this consumes significant security resources and poses a potential threat to transportation security, in addition to being very costly for the passenger," TSA Administrator David Pekoske said in a statement.

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