TSA and things that shouldn't be in your carry on

Oak

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I worked an airport X-ray machine for a few months a long, long, long time ago. I saw some things.

Best story, though, was someone coming to our station and reporting a firearm in the women’s bathroom. I went in and found a revolver in a holster on the toilet paper dispenser in one of the stalls. Police came, I gave them the revolver, one officer looks at the other one and says “it’s department-issue.” A plain-clothes officer had unclipped it from her belt and accidentally left it behind when she was finished.
 

Wildabeast

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Mar 11, 2020
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NC / UT / WY
Not my carry on, but in my jacket pocket. I had a .308 cartridge. Funny thing was that it was in the jacket pocket on my outbound flight and not detected. It was detected on my return flight. I wasn’t wearing the jacket, but rather sent it through the scanner in a tray. They simply confiscated the cartridge and sent me on my way. They just shook their heads when it told them it got through undetected on my outbound.

I also had an incident after my brother’s funeral service. It was a military service with 21 gun salute. The Legion guys gave empty shell casings to family members along with the US flag. My carry-on was flagged by the x-ray machine operator. They searched my bag, saw that it was an empty casing and allowed me to keep it after I explained the situation to them.
 

LuketheDog

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Nov 29, 2015
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Sedalia, Colorado
I fly every week and have seen a lot of things. My favorite was when I flew home from a hunting trip and I had a empty brass casing from my rifle. The TSA lady freaked and called for the airport police. Happened to be a sheriff. When he showed up she showed him the spent round and he of course said "what's the problem, there is no bullet". Her reply....... It smells like gunpowder. His reply "yes"

Your free to go.......................

I had the same stinking thing happen with some empty brass once at DIA, just an empty .270 cartridge. You shoulda seen the looks they were giving me across the bag table after their triumphant bag search turned up the case, like they just couldn't wait to do a cavity search too. Then the officer said "You called me over here for empty brass? Seriously?", he gave them a similar look and told me to have a nice flight.

Just a few weeks ago they pulled me over and rummaged through my carryon for...my pbj sandwich 🤦‍♂️
 

thomas89

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Apr 9, 2015
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383
Doesn’t really count but found a live 9mm round in the line at SEATAC dropping my mother off. Thought about turning it in to TSA, but seeing the lot of them standing around 30 feet away from it shooting the breeze told me all I needed to know about how much good that’d do.

Flying out of Austin this spring I found a Bic lighter under the table for the security bins.
 

glass eye

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Sep 3, 2012
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El Centro, CA
A friend got pulled aside because they found a single rifle round in his coat pocket. Almost missed our flight.
Coming home from NZ and while waiting in line going through US customs I discovered a few shotgun shells in my carry-on camera bag. I went to the restroom and dumped them in the trash.
Another time after checking in my bags Coming home from NZ I discovered my pockets were full of nearly a box of shotgun shells. Another trip to the restroom to dump them.
 

Jim Anderson

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Jun 14, 2018
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Meeker, CO
Left a 6-inch fixed-blade dive knife in my check on - it was the same bag I’d been using on the boat for diving. We were on a spearfishing trip to puerto Vallarta, and I believe the fact that we all had dive-related equipment in our bags is the only reason I got let out of that little room.

When the TSA agent found it after pulling me aside, I said “Oh no”, and he said “Oh yah. Your going down.” I kinda crapped my pants. 😂
 

Otto Matic

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Jan 3, 2021
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686
Two stories.
1) we got fogged in on Kodiak island. We go to the airport for our next flight (cancelled due to fog) when the TSA agent asked my friend for an ID.
Dip wad reaches in his wallet and whips out his Texas CHL license!
2) jumped off a plane from Kodiak to Anchorage. Walked directly to our next flight.
A TSA agent was directing a passenger to a US Mail kiosk right off the check in line. Seems he had inadvertently packed an uluu to carry home.
 

Otto Matic

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Jan 3, 2021
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686
A buddy and me had been out turkey hunting when I got a call that my grandson was being care flighted out of Reynolds Hospital on Fort Sill.
My buddy cleaned out my truck while I cleaned up.
When I got to the gate, the directed me over to a "search" area. I got out and explained, "They're careflighting my grandson out of Reynolds and I'm trying to get there before he leaves."
The two MP's look at each other and one says, "Get him outta here!"
When I get back to Fort Sill to pick up my truck, I see my Rem 870 12 gauge (fully loaded!) under the back seat!

If those two guys had seen that, I'd STILL be in Fort Leavenworth! 🤯
 

fishing4sanity

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Mar 9, 2011
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eastern Washington
This past December I returned from Oklahoma, used my pack as a carry-on, when I was emptying it at home I pulled my full-size Leatherman out of the pack. Maybe in Oklahoma that's a normal carry-on item?

A few years ago flying home from a hunting trip I had a long layover in my father-in-law's hometown. I wanted to give him a backstrap and couldn't find anything against it in the rules, so my carry-on contained one frozen backstrap. Some confused looks from TSA and a few questions and I was on board with a backstrap, delivered to my f-i-l a couple hours later.
 

belshawelk

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Aug 27, 2015
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967
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Oregon
I had the same stinking thing happen with some empty brass once at DIA, just an empty .270 cartridge. You shoulda seen the looks they were giving me across the bag table after their triumphant bag search turned up the case, like they just couldn't wait to do a cavity search too. Then the officer said "You called me over here for empty brass? Seriously?", he gave them a similar look and told me to have a nice flight.

Just a few weeks ago they pulled me over and rummaged through my carryon for...my pbj sandwich 🤦‍♂️
lol. Must be the dips**t TSA in CO. Mine was in a Grand Junction CO.
 

Gellar

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The Driftless Area
Checking in at ANC we had 4 coolers of moose meat they were all like 5 lbs over. After telling us how much the overage charge was for each cooler the desk clerk said her husband had not gotten a moose that year, and asked if she could have some of the meat? She found a cooler in the back and took some meat out of each cooler until they were at 50lbs.
 

WyoDoug

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Apr 8, 2019
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Cheyenne, Wyoming
While I was still on active duty, I went to a Combat Battle Skills course that involved demolitions before I got promoted to Sergeant. A few days before I was to graduate, we blew up a bunch of trees with C4 and blew up some doors learning how to mold it and penetrate hardened doors in an urban combat setting. And the day before graduation we had fun blowing up a bunch of leftover explosives that included C4, claymores, Bangalore torpedoes and other stuff so we didn't have to turn it back in. Well what I didn't do is clean my BDUs I used in the field before graduation day and figured on doing laundry when I arrived back in Denver on leave. Well, got to the airport on the way back home and they had sniffer dogs when my baggage went through the screening. I was pulled from the flight along with my checked and carry on baggage. Once I got searched and everything checked and I explained that I had just finished training that involved explosives, I was allowed on the next flight...24 hours later. I think them chemical sensors were just coming into play about then but the security check point used trained dogs on me and they sniffed explosive residue out on both my checked duffle bags and carry on.
 

CoffeeGoat

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Aug 23, 2020
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I'm surprised no one has mentioned cheese yet. When I lived out east everytime I went home I would bring back several large blocks of Tillamook's finest. The first time I didn't take them out of the bag and apparently the density and shape looks just like plastic explosive gong through the scanners. It resulted in an extensive search and promises to always leave them out for inspection in the future.
 

noharleyyet

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TEXAS
I was in line and realized I had my pocket knife. I quickly walked out of the airport and snuck it up on a high window sill. I quietly picked it up a week later. Shhhh…
Guilty...Love Field in Dallas and a Shiner Bock Festival...same pocketknife.
 

Mallardsx2

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Apr 4, 2015
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975
I got pulled in security and questioned one year. They ran my pack through 5 times and emptied it. Shook it and kept questioning me and they said do you have any weapons in this bag and I told them 10 times I did not.....

Finally, after 10 minutes of rooting through the pack, they found a cheap pocket knife inside of an interior fold of the backpack. It was mine and I had "lost it" 10 year prior.....lol

The TSA guy looked at me with this "Really" look and I told him I had lost it 10 years ago. He said "What do you want to do with it?" I said I had "lived without it for 10 years so I guess I could live without it"....lol They threw it in the confiscation bin and I boarded the plane with 5 seconds to spare....lol

I do feel that they believed me after it was all said and done. I truly had no idea it was in that backpack.

Keep in mind the blade on this thing might have been 2" long....
 

BirdManMike

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Oct 9, 2019
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344
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Montana
Had a large folding buck knife in my pack flying out of Spokane. Really bummed because my wife had given it to me. The TSA fellow had me run back to the counter where they retrieved my checked bag and I was able to put it in.

Going thru German security in Munich, had a small, folding pen knife on my keychain. The guy picked it up, opened it, looked at it, looked at me, looked back at the knife, then closed it and put it back in the bin before waiving me on.

On a connection to Sweden thru Reykjavik, had my fly rod tube confiscated by Icelandic security claiming it could be used as a weapon. They gave it back to me before I boarded my next flight - didnt check it, but gave it back to me.

Apparently, I am more of a threat to Icelanders than the Germans - I mightve taken over the whole airport with the rod tube, or something.
 

noharleyyet

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Nov 15, 2004
Messages
28,478
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TEXAS
I worked an airport X-ray machine for a few months a long, long, long time ago. I saw some things.

Best story, though, was someone coming to our station and reporting a firearm in the women’s bathroom. I went in and found a revolver in a holster on the toilet paper dispenser in one of the stalls. Police came, I gave them the revolver, one officer looks at the other one and says “it’s department-issue.” A plain-clothes officer had unclipped it from her belt and accidentally left it behind when she was finished.
1626960408414.png
 

Dsnow9

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Oct 29, 2019
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Colorado
Traveling with an infant the baby wipes I guess look like explosives. Finally had someone tell us after 3 times of getting the bag torn apart.

In high school a couple of us went to Germany for a snowboard competition. 3 security check points on the way there and two on the way back before one of the guys with us got pulled coming back into the us at customs. They were going through his carry on with purpose. Asking all the questions, then proceed to pull out a 16” Phillips head screw driver. A big handle on it to. The guy had no clue it was in there and had made it through all the other security check points till then.
 

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