CHARLOTTE, N.C. - Transportation Security Administration agents have confiscated knives, nunchucks and a chainsaw from passengers at Charlotte Douglas International Airport.
Items such as those can bring checkpoint lines to a grinding halt.
The moment travelers roll their suitcases through the doors, they all have a common goal – making it to their plane in time.
“You need to be on time,” traveler Silvina Giammarra said.
But some travelers don’t always inspect their bags beforehand, which creates a problem for everyone else at TSA checkpoints.
TSA Federal Security Director Kevin Frederick said his agents run into the issue every day.
From a replica gun to real guns, people walk into airports with plenty of items that won’t fly.
“Flabbergasted – we’re talking about explosives on board an airplane. What would make you think you can bring it onboard an aircraft?” Frederick said.
Agents at Charlotte Douglas have stopped brass knuckles, nunchucks and even part of a chainsaw from going onboard.
“They are working really hard,” airline attendant Deandrea Gadsden said. “I never thought a bowling pin could be a weapon.”
Channel 9 learned 65 guns have been found so far this year at the airport and 75 were found in total last year.
Any weapons, especially guns, can wreck travel plans.
Officials said the average time in a security checkpoint at Charlotte Douglas is just over 9 1/2 minutes, but, if a gun or other dangerous weapon is found, the wait time can more than double.
Even a snow globe can get travelers in trouble because what’s inside it.
“If it is larger than a tennis ball, you cannot and, reason for it: That’s not water in there; that is glycol alcohol,” Frederick said.
This holiday season, more than 32,000 people a day are expected to roll through Charlotte Douglas, and agents will be screening everything.
Agents suggest travelers do themselves and everyone else a favor: Double-check your bags. They also said that if you happen to get stuck in line, always remember it is your safety they are trying to protect.
“It is the responsibility of the passenger on what you can carry and what you can’t carry,” Giammarra said.
Find more information about what is and isn’t allowed on planes here.
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