If you’ve ever flown before, you know the drill by now: laptops out, shoes off, liquids in three-ounce bottles, definitely no guns… At least—that’s what’s supposed to happen when you travel by air. But apparently, the most obvious rule on that list bears repeating. According to WSB-TV Atlanta, on January 2, a Delta passenger not only carried a gun through security but was able to take it on his flight to Tokyo. He alerted officials of the weapon upon arrival.
The TSA confirmed the incident and issued the following statement:
TSA has determined standard procedures were not followed and a passenger did in fact pass through a standard screening TSA checkpoint with a firearm at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport on January 2. TSA will hold those responsible appropriately accountable.
A gun. Not a water bottle or a slightly too large lotion container. An entire gun. Per CBS News, this oversight was not related to the government shutdown, during which TSA agents are going unpaid for their work. These mistakes just kind of happen sometimes. Almost everyone who flies with some regularity has a story of illicit or downright illegal items they’ve accidentally gotten through security. I myself have brought lighters, nail clippers, even some, ahem, not-so-legal substances onto airplanes. Another unnamed Uproxx writer tells of a friend accidentally bringing LSD onto an airplane. (Though, to be fair, there’s a big difference between bringing a whole-ass pistol on an airplane and an Altoids tin full of quickly-degrading LSD.)
In fact, this isn’t the first time someone has attempted to bring a gun through security at an American airport: a simple Google search reveals numerous examples of people attempting to bring guns onto planes. There was even a 2010 incident where a man accidentally brought a loaded .40 caliber gun through security at the Houston airport, which he reported as soon as he landed at his destination.
According to New York Magazine‘s Intelligencer, this happens more often than you might think, though that was in 2010. A different time, a different world. Taylor Swift and Eminem were the top-selling artists. Oversized cardigans, maxi skirts, and rompers ruled casual fashion. Surely things are different now, in 2019, where…Taylor Swift and Eminem are…top-selling artists, and, uh, oversized cardigans, maxi skirts, and rompers are…ruling casual fashion.
Ah. Well. Here’s hoping it doesn’t happen again in the future.