TABLE 1-1-8 - Prohibited Items Intercepted at Airport Screening Checkpoints: 2002-2008

TABLE 1-1-8 - Prohibited Items Intercepted at Airport Screening Checkpoints: 2002-2008

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  2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008
Total prohibited items 3,775,345 6,114,612 7,089,599 15,887,596 13,711,759 6,516,022 972,810
Total firearms and incendiaries 80,268 494,806 694,299 401,047 115,775 91,039 117,102
Firearms 927 683 650 2,217 2,075 1,416 902
Incendiaries 79,341 494,123 693,649 398,830 113,700 89,623 116,200
Knivesa 1,036,697 1,961,849 2,058,652 1,822,752 1,607,125 1,056,687 626,182
Box cuttersa 32,788 20,991 22,350 21,315 15,999 11,908 6,284
Other cutting instrumentsa 1,846,207 2,973,413 3,567,731 3,276,691 163,419 101,387 59,459
Clubs and batsa 11,131 25,139 28,813 20,531 12,296 9,443 6,447
Othera 768,254 638,414 717,754 10,345,260 11,797,145 5,245,558 157,336

a 2008 consists of data up to Aug. 8, 2008 with the exception of Firearms and Incendiaries. TSA has stopped the collection of data on all prohibited items except for Firearms and Incendiaries as of Aug. 8, 2008.

NOTES: 2002 data are April through December.

The large increase in 2005 and decrease in 2007 was primarily due to the prohibition of lighters on board from April 2005 to August 2007. Fluctuations in counts may be attributed to changes in definitions and regulations governing prohibited items.

Other cutting instruments include scissors, hatchets, swords, sabers, meat cleavers, ice axes, and picks. Effective Dec. 22, 2005, scissors less than 4 inches and tools less than 7 inches were no longer prohibited.

Knives include any length and type except round-bladed, butter, and plastic cutlery.

Clubs includes martial arts items, baseball bats, night sticks, hammers, pool cues, and billy clubs.

Firearms includes any weapon (including a starter gun) that is designed to or may readily be converted to expel a projectile by the action of an explosive, as well as spear guns, BB guns, flare pistols, compressed air guns, and stunning devices.

Other refers to tools, self-defense items, compressed gas cylinders, bleach, lighters, and certain sporting goods. Lighters (except for torch lighters and micro torches) were removed from the prohibited items list effective Aug. 4, 2007.

SOURCE: U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Transportation Security Administration, Office of Transportation Security Policy, personal communication, October 2009 as reported in U.S. Department of Transportation, Research and Innovative Technology Administration, Bureau of Transportation Statistics, National Transportation Statistics, table 2-16b, available at http://www.bts.gov/publications/national_transportation_statistics/ as of January 2010.