How many guns did TSA recover at DC area airport checkpoints?

HERNDON, Va. — Transportation Security Administration agents are coming across more guns at security checkpoints, both in the D.C. region and across the nation.

In 2016, a record 3,391 guns were discovered in carry-on bags at checkpoints across the country, a 28 percent increase over 2015’s numbers.

The numbers at the region’s airports were up as well. Sixty-seven guns were recovered at the three airports in 2016, compared with 50 in 2015. Dulles International and BWI Marshall airports each had 24 guns discovered in 2016, while Reagan National Airport had 19.

“The vast majority of people tell us that the reason they have their firearm with them is that they forgot that they had it with them,” said TSA spokesperson Lisa Farbstein.

“The second-most-popular excuse is that their husband packed their bag for them or that their wife packed their bag for them.”

The D.C.-area airports ranked relatively low in the number of firearms discovered. Atlanta’s Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport had the most firearms discovered in 2016, at 198.

The TSA also said that more than 80 percent of the guns discovered at checkpoints nationally were loaded.


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