NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – It’s a costly mistake: firearms are showing up at an alarming rate at the Nashville International Airport.
Mark Howell, Regional Spokesperson for the Transportation Security Administration (TSA), told News 2 in the last six months 97 firearms have been seized at the Nashville airport.
Last year, Atlanta led the country with 507 firearms screened by TSA. Nashville was number 5 on the list in 2021 with 162 guns confiscated.
Howell said while it may seem like an absent-minded mistake, there are heavy ramifications.
He said last year $3,000 to $4,000 civil penalty fines were given out, but they can range up to $13,000.
He added while they were seeing an uptick here in Music City, this was a trend in most open carry states.
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“We do see a disproportionate number of guns here in Tennessee per passenger,” Howell said. “I would say almost 99.9 percent of the time the excuse we get is, ‘Oops! I forgot it was in the bag,’ or, ‘I forgot to take it out of the bag.'”
A fine is not the only thing you could face for bringing a gun to the airport: if you are a member of TSA Pre-Check you will also lose your status if you were to walk in with your firearm.
If you would like to travel with your firearm you’re asked to check it at your airline ticket counter. Click here to see how you can safely pack and travel with a firearm.