TSA confiscates 8 loaded firearms last week at major Tennessee airports


NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Eight loaded firearms were discovered at security airport checkpoints across the state last week according to the Transportation Security Administration.

At least one handgun was found from Sept. 13-20, at each of the four major airports in Tennessee. Firearms are prohibited in carry-on baggage. They may be transported in checked baggage, provided they are declared to the airline, locked in a proper carrying case and unloaded.

“Even with much lower than normal passenger numbers, we continue to find firearms at a very high rate at security checkpoints,” Steve Wood, TSA federal security director for Tennessee, said. “Passengers must remember they’re responsible for the contents of bags and our advice is they thoroughly inspect all personal belongings to make sure there are no illegal or prohibited items before coming to the airport.”

The firearms and locations are:

Nashville International Airport (BNA)

  • Sept. 14: Sig Sauer .380 caliber
  • Sept. 17: Sig Sauer .380 caliber
  • Sept. 17: North American Arms Derringer .22 caliber
  • Sept. 18: Ruger 9mm

Memphis International Airport (MEM)

  • Sept. 18: Smith & Wesson 9mm

McGhee Tyson Airport (TYS)

  • Sept. 20: Smith & Wesson .40 caliber

Chattanooga Metropolitan Airport (CHA)

  • Sept. 18: Glock .380 caliber

Tri-Cities Airport (TRI)

  • Sept. 17: Ruger 9mm

In each instance, TSA officers notified local enforcement partners, who removed the firearms and passengers from the checkpoint area. In addition to potential criminal charges, passengers who bring firearms to a checkpoint face civil penalties from TSA.

TSA officers have detected 106 firearms at Tennessee airports year to date in 2020. A total of 139 were detected across the state last year.


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