TSA confiscates more guns in 2020 than in 2019 despite fewer screenings; 2 Texas airports high on list

Texas
denver international airport, r m

FILE – In this June 10, 2020 file photo, Transportation Security Administration agents process passengers at the south security checkpoint at Denver International Airport in Denver, as travelers deal with the effects of the new coronavirus. TSA, the government agency that oversees air travel, said the number of passengers screened for flights topped one million in a day on Sunday, Oct. 18 for the first time since the coronavirus pandemic outbreak last March. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski, File)

AUSTIN (KXAN) — The Transportation Safety Administration reported that despite screening 500 million fewer passengers in 2020, the agency caught a rate of twice as many firearms at security checkpoints in airports across the country as it did in 2019.

In 2020, the TSA says they caught 10 firearms per 1 million passengers screened despite the big dip in passenger traffic due to the COVID-19 pandemic. In 2019, agents caught five firearms per 1 million passengers screened.

The 2020 rate is the highest in the agency’s 19-year history.

Two of the top five airports with the most firearm discoveries in 2020 are in Texas. Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport came in at No. 2 on TSA’s list with 176 confiscated firearms, and Houston’s George Bush Intercontinental Airport had 126, landing at No. 3 on the chart.

Atlanta’s Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport had the most confiscations with 220. Here’s the top 10 chart provided by the TSA:

RANKAIRPORT (CODE)TOTAL
1Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport (ATL)220
2Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport (DFW)176
3Houston’s George Bush Intercontinental Airport (IAH)126
4Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport (PHX)124
5Denver International Airport (DEN)104
6Nashville International Airport (BNA)94
7Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport (FLL)87
8Orlando International Airport (MCO)79
9Las Vegas McCarran International Airport (LAS)72
10Salt Lake City International Airport (SLC)71

The totals account for guns confiscated in carry-on baggage at security checkpoints, the TSA said in a press release. Passengers are allowed to travel with firearms if they are properly checked in, declared and in checked luggage, but travelers should be aware of firearm laws in places they’re traveling to.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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