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Guns and airport questions

Discussion in 'General Gun Discussions' started by davidtdm, Dec 16, 2003.

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  1. davidtdm

    davidtdm Member

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    I'll be travelling this holiday . I've checked out the arlines/airport policies about checking firearms in checked baggage. Legally I shouldn't have a problem.

    I was wondering if anyone has recently flown with their firearms? (checked hopefully) . What was the attitude of the clerks at the checkin counter? Were there any additional security measures that you had to go through.(aside from the normal policies/procedures)? I'll be flying Southwest.

    Any coments, suggestions welcome

    ...Dave
     
  2. rayra

    rayra member

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    I've seen a wide range of experiences and results posted, from the 'no problem' all the way to missed flights, conversations in windowless rooms with airport security, and even an extreme tale of a firearms owner being left wholly unattended to repack his firearm-luggage, then being driven unsearched across the tarmac to board his flight.

    I'd say the best thing to do is discover and learn and print-out to take with you all the applicable legal statements and guidance you can find from your airline, airports involved, the TSA, and Federal law. and take two copies. One for you to keep, one to gift to the TSA satffer who gets it all wrong.
     
  3. TarpleyG

    TarpleyG Member

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    From what I have heard, Southwest is one of the better, gun-friendly, airlines. I second what rayra stated, print all pertinent laws and guidelines and keep them with you. Pretty sad if you think about it. WE have to have the burden of proof that we aren't violating THEIR stupid laws/regulations. You'd think they would know them.

    GT
     
  4. dischord

    dischord Member

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    It's not just a gun thing. It's the same in any industry with any subject. The people dealing with the public often don't know everything they should, and the customer must come prepared to educate those "serving" them. Some gems do know all they should, but most don't.
     
  5. Will Fennell

    Will Fennell Member

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    Frequent Flyer

    I fly quite a bit with checked firearms, and actually, its not really a big deal....especially now AFTER 9/11. I had MORE problems before 9/11, because as some here noted, your treatment would vary clerk to clerk because they ususally didn't know the rules and regs.

    Now, the folks at the counter seem much better about being well vered in the rules, and I have had zero problems flying about the US, and internationally with checked firearms.

    Here's the deal, know the rules BEFORE you fly. Follow the rules and be cooperative. I'm as viciously pro RKBA as anyone here, but you need to understand, you are flying on THEIR airplane. Follow their rules.

    And do yourself a favor.....get a GOOD case to fly your firearm in....:rolleyes: I've had the expensive aluminium custom cases.....and had them destroyed:eek: I've found the PELICAN brand synthetic cases more durable than the good aluminium cases and ALOT lighter...

    http://www.pelican.com/

    Happy traveling:cool:
     
  6. Jeff OTMG

    Jeff OTMG Member

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    Listen to Will. I have been on over 100 flights this year alone, all with firearms. I have had no trouble with ticket counter personnel. The only problems that I have had were some 'uninformed' TSA and LE types. Be cooperative, but you may have to be firm so carry a copy of federal CFR with you. Another poster here, as well as myself, have had TSA personnel and others tell us that the CFR does not apply to them because they are federal employees. I nicely inform them that by that logic they could legally rob banks, but that federal law is federal law and applies to one and all. Besides, if I were to break the law then I wouldn't be covered. Just keep your cool and you will be on your way.

    Just a note, the ONLY airports that I have ever had a problem with were in Burbank, Ca (ticket agent many years ago) and two airports in Indiana, Indianapolis and Evansville. Florida, Texas, Tennesse, and Oklahoma no problems.
     
  7. davidtdm

    davidtdm Member

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    Thanks for all the comments. I've made copies of bothe the airline polocies, the TSA check list of waht can a can't be checked or brought on board, and the CFR text on transporting firarms.

    Will,
    Thanks for the thoughts about the pelican cases. I to have one of the aluminum cases. Lucikily I don't have the correct cut outs for the firarms I want to take with me. So I'm off to get a pelican case.

    I'll be sure to post my experiences (flying that is) when I get back.

    ..Dave
     
  8. Charleton

    Charleton Member

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    airport questions

    Could someone post a source for the TSA and CFR cites? I'd sure like to get them.

    Thanks.

    Gene.
     
  9. davidtdm

    davidtdm Member

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  10. Slabside

    Slabside Member

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    Hello,

    I haven't had any problems whatsoever checking firearms. As long as you communicate properly and follow procedures, you shouldn't have any problems. To seasoned ticket agents, checking firearms is no big deal.

    On my last trip, while being checked by the TSA, adjacent to me was another lady being checked. They confiscated her fingernail polish and fingernail polish remover. She was furious. They finally told her if she wanted to keep the stuff that she could get out of line, go back to ticketing and mail the items to herself. Then, she would have to return and have to go all the way back thru the process. Naturally, she was running late for her flight and had to just give up the items.

    Do a seach here on the topic. It's been covered a few times.
    Good luck, have fun, and be safe.
     
  11. Oleg Volk

    Oleg Volk Moderator Emeritus

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  12. Lennyjoe

    Lennyjoe Member

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    Im flying home on Thursday to Ohio.

    Will be part of the sheeple croud cause I cant carry back in the Buckeye state.:cuss:

    Short trip this time, gonna be back to the gun friendly state Sunday eve.

    Looking forward to getting into some snow. :D
     
  13. davidtdm

    davidtdm Member

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    Oleg,

    Wow..... Hopefully I will not have such an exciting experiences as your friends did. If I were to though, I'd go kicking and sceaming. I've already had personal experiences with the FED's.

    Thanks for posting that link.

    ...Dave
     
  14. larry_minn

    larry_minn Member

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    As above and get there early. I like to put handgun in small hard sided locked case and put that INTO my suiitcase. (orange/red tag inside)
    Make sure unloaded AND have rope thru barrel tied off so anyone can see (without touching) there is no ammo in chamber.
    Act like you have done this 1000 times before.
    And use key words. "I need a orange card as I have a UNLOADED firearm in a LOCKED HARD SIDED case I need to DECLARE."
     
  15. davidtdm

    davidtdm Member

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    After scouring the boad for info about flying wih firearms, I saw a lot of information. Some of it, while not contradicting other info but maybe incomplete or just usure.

    I've put together a pdf file(about 22 pages) containing: (1)Airline information (You can insert your own) (2) TSA Information & (3) The Code of Federal Regulations. (concerning firearm travel and ammunition) . Thanks again to those who posted their experiences.

    ...Dave
     
  16. davidtdm

    davidtdm Member

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    Sorry, the file is too big. I'll shrink it down a post it later

    ...Dave
     
  17. Oleg Volk

    Oleg Volk Moderator Emeritus

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  18. Charleton

    Charleton Member

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    davidtdm,

    Thanks for the cites. I think I got what I was looking for -- but nowhere near 22 pages worth (LOL). If you're so minded, I'd be glad to get your file offline -- 22 pages worth, even.

    Best,

    Gene.
     
  19. davidtdm

    davidtdm Member

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    Well I tried to cut the size down but I can't get it under the limit. I'm going to add the stuff to my web site if anyone would like to view it. Hopefully that will be done shortly.

    Here are the links: It is a listing of .pdfs. I'l reference the part and sections below.

    1. Carriage of weapons,explosives,and incendiaries by individuals. Part 1540 Section 111 (c)
    http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/waisidx_03/49cfr1540_03.html

    2. Ammunition. Part 175.10 (a-5)
    http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/waisidx_02/49cfr175_02.html

    ...dave
     
  20. davidtdm

    davidtdm Member

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    Charleton,

    It turned out with that many pages because I had two copies of each of the regs. 1. as it is written in the actual book and two a plain text file in big pring so if someone were not to beleive what the "real" ones says. I also included the pages for my particular airline.

    Call me anal I guess. With my luck I'll get stopped and have to go a round or two with the feds.

    ...dave
     
  21. ctdonath

    ctdonath Member

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    CALL THE AIRLINE BEFORE YOU SHOW UP.

    Shortly after 9/11 I showed up with a G26. I did EVERYTHING TOTALLY RIGHT...but the transit cop spent a half-hour trying every conceivable way to stop me, finally settling on "we are the law of this airport, and you are not taking that with you" (ya want the soundbite? got the whole thing recorded). Had to either leave it in the car or miss my flight.

    Call the airline.
    Call the airport cops.
    Bring all relevant paperwork.
    Bring the FAA flight regs & protocols.
    Be ready to leave it behind.
    GET THERE EARLY.
     
  22. gaston_45

    gaston_45 Member

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    I recently flew through Sacramento and saw just how stupid the screening process has gotten. they had a screening station ON THE WAY OUT of the arrival terminal. The reason? You had to walk through a hallway with a door to the outside in it and then go back into the main terminal to exit. A locked door. With a TSA goon guarding it. This is where it gets funny. The two people in front of me were going through the check station and the first guy gets pulled aside for having the chain going from his front pocket to his wallet in true skater fashion. They told him he would have to leave it because it could be used as a weapon, even though he was leaving the airport, not catching a connecting flight. He get pissed, but leaves the chain. Now on to the next guy, he is clean cut, probably military from where we flew from but has a dive light with retractor on it in his bag. They ask him to take it out and look at it, then wave him through. If you have never seen a dive light retractor it is a little spring loaded winch with about 4 feet of thin stainless steel wire, kind of like those survival saws. During the questioning it was revealed he WAS catching a connecting flight but still kept the retractor. Now to my way of thinking a stainless steel wire with handles on both ends is way more dangerous then 2 feet of chain holding a wallet. Way to go TSA, I felt MUCH safer with a skater punk with a loose wallet, thanks for doing your job.
     
  23. rageman

    rageman Member

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    Best advice I can give you is to be smart. If the TSA wants to inspect your firearms, have them inspect & lock the luggage in front of you. One of my close friends was arrested for sending his Walther P22 in a hard case with the locks on (but not locked so they could inspect the gun) to the "back" area. Also, he had some airsoft stuff in his bags--a gas M-11 with silencer, and a spring glock with silencer. All were marked with orange. IIRC, the person at the desk told him they would be ok (i dont remember if he had them locked up). He was later arrested for having a weapon on airport grounds (the P-22), carrying a concealed weapon (having the P-22 in a case, unlocked so the TSA could inspect it :banghead: ), and having an unlicensed Class III item (the silencer that was on the glock, none of the other airsoft stuff). ATF confiscated the "silencer" for testing, and I dont believe he got it back--it probably exploded when a real round went through it, if they even tested it. He was lucky though, as his dad is a lawyer and one of his friends agreed to take the case. Then again, when I took some shotguns that my late grandfather owned (a Winchester Model 37 .410 and some old side by side 12 ga) that my grandma gave me back home, I got into a conversation with the TSA guy who was inspecting it about old shotguns and hunting in general, and had no problems.

    So, to wrap up my rambling tale: Have them inspect the guns IN FRONT OF YOU.
     
  24. mattk

    mattk Member

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    Do not I repeat DO NOT allow any TSA REP to handle your firearm. Its against TSA regs. Not even their Supervisors can handle firearms.
    Here is the way it is supposed to work.
    1. You declare the firearm to the airline. The airline rep accompanies the case, bag, etc containing the firearm to the TSA screening station.
    2. The bag is placed in the Xray machine. If nothing in bag alarms, it is placed into the baggage system.
    3. The bag disappears into the blackhole of the airport baggage carosel to be loaded on your plane.
    OR.
    If something in the bag or case in which the firearms is contained needs further inspection, the TSA reps should examine the item of interest and ignore the firearm.
    If for some reason a TSA rep suspects a firearm is loaded after being declared he must then call a LEO(FBI, Local police, airport police) who may handle the firearm.

    Ok now cant any TSA person handle a firearm. Simple, according to the government, they arent quilified to safely handle them i.e. no one in TSA has attended a firearms safety class given by the FEDS.
    From a liablitly standpoint it makes sense.

    Heres the problem:
    A bunch of TSA guys are retired cops and military and having a general interest in guns and unfortunately fall victim to their curiousity and just have to ask the passengers with a gun case to open it for inspection when really all they want is to see "whatcha ya got there." What these guys dont realize is that its a pain in the rear to the passagers.
     
  25. Werewolf

    Werewolf Member

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    TSA Regulation:

    § 1540.107 Submission to screening
    and inspection.
    No individual may enter a sterile
    area or board an aircraft without submitting
    to the screening and inspection
    of his or her person and accessible
    property in accordance with the procedures
    being applied to control access to
    that area or aircraft under this subchapter.
    [67 FR 41639, June 19, 2002]


    4th Amendment to the US Constitution

    The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.


    So I guess that the Bill of Rights doesn't apply to the TSA? How do they get away with this stuff?

    The above TSA regulation operates on the assumption that we're all criminals and that they can search us without probable cause and without a warrant.

    I knew that our freedoms were being infringed to a greater degree since 911 but I had no idea that things had gone this far in this country. It's just gonna get worse I suppose - living in the Amerika is going to be more and more difficult as time goes by.
     
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