A record-setting 1,500 firearms were confiscated by airport security screeners in 2012, up from about 1,300 the year before, reports the New York Times. Nearly 85 percent of the weapons were loaded. The agency allows passengers with proper permits to fly with guns that are unloaded and stored in hard-sided checked baggage. The police are called when weapons are found in carry-on luggage or on a passenger.
The world's busiest airport, Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport here, topped the list, with more than 100 guns confiscated in 2012, followed by 75 guns at Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport and 50 guns at Phoenix. At airports in the New York area, where firearm laws are stricter, only a handful of guns were confiscated. The most common type of confiscated gun was a .380 semiautomatic pistol. Airport officials also detected stun guns, grenades and rocket launchers.