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Number of firearms discovered by Idaho TSA workers remained steady in 2020

Despite a reduced number of passengers in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the number of firearms uncovered by TSA did not decrease, according to a report.

BOISE, Idaho — Editor's note: The above video discusses new screening technology being utilized by TSA officers at the Boise Airport (BOI).

In 2020, Idaho Transportation Security Administration (TSA) officers discovered a total of 24 firearms in carry-on luggage across two of Idaho's airports, the same number discovered in 2019.

Despite a dramatic decrease in the number of travelers departing from Idaho airports due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the number found remained consistent with previous years.

Each of the 24 firearms discovered was found by TSA officers during routine pre-flight screenings, according to a release from TSA. All were discovered at either Boise Airport (22) or Idaho Falls Regional Airport (2).

3,257 firearms were discovered in airports nationally in 2020.

In 2019, 19 of the firearms found came from Boise Airport, two came from Idaho Falls Regional Airport, and one each came from Friedman Memorial Airport, Lewiston-Nez Perce County Airport and Magic Valley Regional Airport.

"While the number of guns found at TSA checkpoints statewide has been relatively flat over the past three years, it is my goal to continue educating the public and reminding them of the risks associated with bringing firearms to the security checkpoint," said TSA Federal Security Director for Idaho Andy Coose. "If you own a gun, you need to make sure you do not bring it to the airport in your carry-on luggage or you could find yourself talking to local law Idaho enforcement and paying a hefty fine or civil penalty. Don't forget, if you need to take the gun with you on your trip, it must be declared to the airline, unloaded and in your checked bag."

In 2020, Idaho TSA officers screened approximately 1.3 million people departing from Idaho's six airports, nearly half of the number of people screened in 2020.

TSA officers detected firearms at a rate of about 18.5 per million passengers screened in 2020 as compared to about 9 firearms per million screened in 2019.

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