Skift Take

With the increase in handgun purchases comes an increase in forgotten weapons by consumers who aren't as well trained in their use as the previous generation of owners.

Despite the focus on the Transportation Security Administration’s proposed and then scuttled plan allowing on board tiny knives and novelty sporting goods equipment, the agency has been busy as usual in 2013 finding loaded weapons and other banned items at airport checkpoints across the United States.

The first three months of this year saw an increase in confiscated guns, according to a report last month by Medill’s National Security blog. April continued the upward tick, with 159 weapons found versus 120 in April of last year.

What are the most popular guns people are carelessly or purposely trying to bring on planes in 2013? The small and compact .380 leads the way:

Caliber Number found Jan-Apr 2013 rank 2012 rank
0.380 145 1 1
9mm 90 2 2
0.22 66 3 4
0.40 52 4 5
0.38 38 5 3

The .380 was the most-discovered weapon in 2012, as well. The caliber is one of the most common small handguns and is popular with concealed-carry buyers, which fits with the TSA’s profile of offenders as gun owners who simply forget they have a weapon on them.

The first part of 2013 saw the U.S.’s busiest airport, Atlanta’s Hartsfield-Jackson, slip from the number one slot as top airport for found weapons. Dallas-Fort Worth was the most popular with forgetful gun owners, despite being the third most-trafficked in the country.

Alice Tripp, the Legislative Director of the Texas State Rifle Association, told Skift “I suppose someone could misunderstand the ‘rules’ but in today’s world, that simply can’t happen often and will always be a costly mistake.”

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Source: TSA Blog

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Tags: guns, security, tsa

Photo credit: A Ruger LCP .380 handgun. The .380 is the most popular caliber weapon found at airport security checkpoints. James Case / Flickr

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