TAMPA, Fla. — The Transportation Security Administration reported more than 2.5 million passengers were screened the Sunday after Thanksgiving. Those numbers exceeded last year’s numbers and are the highest since the start of the pandemic.
Tampa International Airport also saw a high volume of passengers during the busy Thanksgiving holiday travel.
"We actually saw higher passenger numbers than we expected. We expected about 725,000 passengers to come through. We saw closer to 800,000," said Emily Nipps, a TPA spokesperson.
There’s one record TSA says was broken this year at Tampa International Airport, and it’s not one they wanted to see.
"We have found a total of 116 firearms. This is obviously a record-breaking number," said Jesús Serrano, TSA Deputy Federal Security Director. "It is a concern because it brings an unnecessary risk to the checkpoint, especially because most of the firearms that we find are loaded."
TSA reports last year, 105 guns were seized at TPA and that set a record.
"It is a concern because it brings an unnecessary risk to the checkpoint, especially because most of the firearms that we find are loaded," Serrano said.
TSA says in most cases, it’s not intentional, but it’s still a costly mistake.
"We have not found any malicious intent behind all these firearms that we're finding. However, they do carry a fine if they're found at the checkpoint," Serrano said.
According to TSA, passengers may transport unloaded firearms in a locked hard-sided container as checked baggage only. Declare the firearm and ammunition to the airline when checking your bag at the ticket counter. The container must completely secure the firearm from being accessed.
This story was originally reported by Fox affiliate WTVT in Tampa.