Weapons found at Wisconsin airport checkpoints increase in 2021

WISCONSIN — Nearly 6,000 firearms were found in carry-on baggage at U.S. airport checkpoints in 2021, according to new information released by the Transportation Security Administration. Of these weapons, 35 were seized at airports in Wisconsin.

Nationwide, 5,972 firearms were intercepted at 268 airports last year, according to TSA data. This represents a 36% increase from 2019, when travel volume was similar to 2021, and a staggering 45% increase from 2020.

Of the firearms confiscated by authorities, 86% were loaded, CBS News reported.

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“This presents a significant health, safety and security issue for us,” TSA Administrator David Pekoske told CBS News.

In Wisconsin, TSA agents discovered that 35 firearms had been found in people’s carry-on bags at airports in the state. This is an increase from the 16 weapons found in 2019.

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Here’s how many firearms were found at airports in YOUR STATE in 2021:

  • Milwaukee Mitchell International: 23
  • Appleton International: Two
  • Green Bay Austin Straubel Field: One
  • Regional LaCrosse: two
  • Dane County Regional: Seven

In 2021, the TSA screened approximately 585 million passengers and crew at airports nationwide. This figure represents an increase of 81% from the estimated 324 million people projected in 2020.

This means that a firearm was detected for every 97,999 passengers checked.

Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport in Atlanta topped the list this year with 507 weapons detected, up from 323 in 2019.

These airports had the highest number of weapons found in 2021:

1) Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport: 507 guns
2) Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport: 317 guns
3) Houston George Bush Intercontinental Airport: 245 guns
4) Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport: 196 guns
5) Nashville International Airport: 163 guns
6) Denver International Airport: 141 guns
7) Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport: 128 guns
8) Orlando International Airport: 124 guns
9) Louis Armstrong New Orleans International: 119 guns
10) Salt Lake City International Airport: 115 guns

Pekoske told CBS News he was concerned about the alarming toll.

“What’s the cause? I don’t know exactly, but in general I think our gun carrying detections reflect a little more people carrying guns in the country,” he told CBS News.

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