TSA gun polices criticized after airport shooting in Florida

By Patricia Martellotti - Reporter

ROANOKE (WSLS 10) - Passengers at the nation's airports are allowed to transport unloaded guns in their checked baggage, according to the Transportation Safety Administration.

Brad Boettcher, marketing director of Roanoke-Blacksburg Regional Airport says, "It varies from airlines slightly, but the base procedure is that the firearm needs to be unloaded, it needs to be put in a hard-sided container that must be locked."

The suspected shooter at Friday's deadly scene checked his gun using proper TSA protocol.

But when he arrived in Florida, police say he got the gun, loaded it and began shooting in baggage claim, killing several people.

Travelers are now concerned over policies for weapons checked into luggage.

Charles Jolley who travels frequently said, "I don't think they ought to allow ammunition. I don't mind empty weapons. But ammunition is a whole other thing."

Roanoke airport officials say some travelers accidentally bring weapons through security.

Mary Goosby who's traveling to Chicago wants the TSA policies on weapons to be changed altogether.

She says, "As soon as you deplane, and you can go and pick it out, and nobody's standing over your shoulder to see if you picked out the ammunition or not."

TSA has not yet announced any future changes to policies on weapons.

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