A man was able to carry a firearm through security at an airport in Georgia and take it aboard his flight to Japan, it was revealed.
The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) confirmed that the passenger passed his firearm on January 2 at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport before taking DL295 from Delta to Tokyo Narita International Airport. .
After the passenger informed the airline workers of what had happened, Delta Airlines informed the TSA of the incident.
"The TSA determined that standard procedures had not been followed and that one passenger actually passed a TSA checkpoint with a firearm at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport. January 2, "said the agency in a statement. WSB-TV. "TSA will hold the responsible people appropriately."
The security breach occurred about a week and a half after the closure of the government, which began December 22, 2018, as a result of President Donald Trump's requests for additional funding for his wall located along from the US-Mexico border.
This closure has resulted in thousands of TSA agents working without pay. CNN had previously reported that hundreds of TSA workers had been sick at four major airports during this period.
However, the TSA denied that the closure of the government was at the root of the security breach at Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport.
"The perception that this could have occurred as a result of the partial closure of the government would be wrong," TSA said in a statement. "The national rate of unplanned absence of TSA staff on Thursday, January 3, 2019 was 4.8%, up from 6.3% last year, on Thursday, Jan. 4, 2018." National calls were therefore higher a year ago than this year at this date. "
Michael Bilello, deputy administrator of public affairs at TSA, said that the TSA had recorded an unscheduled national absentee rate of 7.7%, compared with a rate of 3.2% the previous year.
"More importantly, safety standards remain unchanged at our country's airports," tweeted Bilello on Jan. 13.
Between December 10 and December 16, 2018, just before the government closed, the TSA discovered 78 firearms in hand luggage after screening over 14.8 million passengers. Of the 78 discovered firearms, 63 were loaded and 28 were chambered, the agency said in a statement.
"In most cases, the traveler forgets that the article is in his bag," said a spokesman for the TSA. "Unfortunately, this happens far too often. Our goal in sharing these discoveries is to remind travelers to check their baggage and rules before traveling to the airport. "
TSA officers at St. Louis Lambert International Airport in St. Louis, Missouri, October 10, 2016. The agency confirmed that a man had been able to take a firearm during his flight from Atlanta Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport to Tokyo in early January 2019. ROBYN BECK / AFP / Getty Images