Odd Things at Airports: Top 7 Strange Things Found by TSA

My advice: Do not attempt to go through security with any of the following weird items – and see how to get a quicker security experience after the list.

7 Strange Items Found at Airport Security

1. Hair Brush from Hell

A passenger tried to go through security at Lynchburg Regional Airport with a dagger hidden in the bristles of a hair brush. The attempt was unsuccessful.

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2. Rocky Mountain Speargun

Salt Lake City was the scene of a passenger’s attempt to go through the TSA line with a speargun. The weapon was confiscated.

3. The New York Chain Saw Non-Massacre

This passenger at Elmira-Corning Airport – with a gassed up chain saw in his carry-on – was allowed to keep it, once the gas was disposed of, and the chain placed in checked-baggage.

4. Lips to Keel Over For

A lipstick case concealing a 350,000-volt stun gun was discovered in a passenger bag at the Burlington, Vermont, airport. That’s a definite no-no.

5. Teargas Take-down

A passenger at Phoenix’s Sky Harbor airport came through security with a live teargas grenade, but did not leave with it. Frustratingly, the TSA does not explain why these people do what they do.

6. Money Miracle

The miracle is that the $22,000+ in cash – which was found in an abandoned carry-on bag – was discovered and turned over to the TSA at Jacksonville International. Even more miraculously, the money was returned to its no-doubt frantic owner.

7. Gunslingers at the Airport

The TSA find hundreds and hundreds of guns in carry-ons each year, and so far this year they’ve discovered 70 loaded weapons. An Indiana chocolate factory owner had an unloaded pistol, but the California politician and a 65-year-old Texas woman – an attorney – had loaded guns. It seems obvious, but what the heck: you may not bring guns in carry-ons, and don’t even think about loading them.

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Faster, Smoother Airport Security Experiences

Want a faster security experience?

Try a new app called My TSA – which provides wait times for security lines plus advice on what you can and cannot bring. Like loaded guns.

Try one of the new expanded PreCheck lanes. You must meet certain eligibility requirements but the payoff may be worth it (you get to keep your shoes on).

More from Rick Seaney:

7 Best TSA ‘Aha Moments’: Strange Things at Airport Security


Published: February 2, 2012