I watched a man argue about a 1/5th of vodka for 10 minutes, chug it, then promptly have a heart attack. That was certainly weird.
A story my old high school debate coach told me:
Probably about 10 years ago now, another high school’s debate team was going to some national level tournament. When boarding the flight home after the tournament, security pulled aside the debate coach after finding a loaded gun in her suitcase.
This, of course, left her very confused as she had not brought a gun to the debate tournament. Upon seeing it, she identifies it as her husband’s gun. She had no idea it was there.
The crazy part of the story wasn’t that a gun was found in the bag. It’s the fact that the gun was found on the return flight.
Which means on the initial flight out of DFW airport, she walked right through security with a loaded gun in possession and nothing happened to her.
As a 21-year-old, I smuggled myself on to a flight when I forgot my ID by claiming I was 16 and had no ID.
Kitchen sinks, engine parts, but my all time favorite was the man who came off a flight from Haiti after the earthquake with a suitcase stuffed with nothing but cash and porn. No clothes. No keepsakes. No paperwork from his homeland beyond his passport… Cash and porn.
I process military flights and you wouldn’t believe the crap people try to smuggle to and from operational theatres. Smoke grenades (“I forgot I had them!”) Pen flares (“But it’s not prepared to fire though”) a magazine full of 5.56 rounds (“I didn’t know it had to be empty”) and knives of all sizes hidden behind plates in body armor. (Top tip – you may as well clench the blade between your teeth like Rambo as it’s no less-subtle in a bag – it stands out like a dog’s dick on a machine)
In the defense of most squaddies, they’re tired and bored so they often make mistakes.
“I can take a chainsaw through if I empty out the gas right?” I just stared at him for a long time.
Former ramp agent here, we processed an “emotional support goose” apparently it acted as a soothing flight buddy for the passenger…not sure how that works!
Weirdest? A glass case of dead tarantulas. Last week an American guy tried bringing through a fully loaded glock. He was flying out of London so I have no idea how he got it in the first place. Obviously police were called and he was arrested. You also get people bringing through life jackets from the planes, which is a serious offence for which the police get called to arrest then.
One day I was doing a bag check on a strange dense metal item. It was a woman and her son, the item was some weird piece of metal. I didn’t know what it was but I knew it wasn’t dangerous. Anyway, She saw what it was and yelled at her son “DON’T LOOK OR YOU’LL GO BLIND” she whispered to me that it was a kegel exerciser. I re-ran the bag through the X-Ray so the operator could see what it looked like without the item in the bag and he said “what the hell was that” I told him and he had no idea what Kegels were and why someone would need to exercise them.
I gave her the bag back and tried not to die laughing because of her poor sheltered child.
My top 3 as a pilot. I saw a Hatian try to bring a dead rooster and other voodoo trinkets including knives in his carry on.
Also a person put a dead dog that was badly decayed in checked luggage. I would say it was dead over a week.
Hunters ground up their deer put it in cardboard boxes, ducked taped and froze it solid. They expected the mass of the frozen block to keep the meat cool and not ooze blood on to everyone else’s stuff.
As an Airport Security worker, I have seen all kinds of things try to go through, chainsaws, blowtorches and the worst one was a Chloroform, a 1 liter bottle of Chloroform…
12. So maybe this guy wasn’t smuggling drugs, but seems like he should still get arrested for being creepy.
Friend works as a flight attendant. She told me about some guy who was stopped from going on a plane because he had a suitcase full of female mannequin parts, head, body etc all taken apart. Apparently security thought he was smuggling drugs, just turned out he like mannequins.
I once saw a man get caught and try to argue his way out of having a suitcase full of 100% pure Mexican black tar heroin.
I’m an airline pilot in Europe, had a passenger in Italy present his handgun to us on the flight deck and wanted to know what he should do with it. Turned out he was Italian police and was used to leaving it on the flight deck with Alitalia guys. Our airline did not permit firearms or ammunition anywhere on board. He either had to leave the gun or he couldn’t fly, so he had to offload himself. The scary thing about it was that if he hadn’t mentioned the weapon to us, no one else would have – not the security personnel or handling agent. Needless to say, reports were filed on Italian security procedures.
This opens up the possibility of any police or service personnel smuggling a gun through security for their own reasons or terrorists coercing someone to get a gun through security under duress or similar.
Believe it or not, a high-powered magnet. I’m sure there are hundreds of stories of dildos and other gross shit, but weirdest? Yes, a magnet. This thing was so powerful that, while still in the bag, was ripping off the rollers on our conveyor and literally took 3 adult men to get off. If you put this thing around 1.5 feet from a metal object and weren’t holding it properly it would fly out of your hand. This idiot who was working that day had braces and if I didn’t stop him he probably gotten his teeth ripped out. Just so strange and random. We didn’t let him take it with him.
My friend works at John Lennon airport and he found a family smuggling their dead father through airport security. The family said he was sleeping.
17. Don’t do this:
Seen in Bangkok airport: check-in flight staff sees something sketchy on the scanner, unzips the suitcase to find that a guy is trying to bring multiple bags of water with LIVE exotic fish in them on the flight. He was baffled as to why it would be a problem.
A guy once passed through with two suitcases filled with egg cartons.
EMPTY egg cartons.
That was it.
After some questioning we let him go; he refused to answer a single question and only kept asking “Is this illegal? Why am I not free to go?”
I lie awake at night wondering what his story was…
This may get buried but… My friend’s father (whom I’ve never met, thankfully) has Crohn’s disease and goes around with a colostomy bag.
When he travels, he sticks his bundled up weed in the poop bag and goes through airport security, apparently never getting checked. I suppose no airport security wants to rifle through a poop bag. Or they assume that no person in their right mind would want to rifle through their own poop bag in order to smoke some poop ganja.
Either way, most disgusting way of smuggling illicit substances internationally that I’ve heard of so far.
One time flying through Amsterdam a guy had opened his sealed package of expensive duty free scotch and they would not let him take it on. He opened the bottle and took a swig…and passed it down the line of people boarding the flight. A flight that drinks together…stays together or something. (note: Amsterdam security screening is done at the gate unlike most airports)
Hey throw away for this. Cremated cat inside a leather satchel, inside the vagina of an extremely obese woman. Cremated in her fireplace, still had some fur and bones. Kid you not.
We get some luggage flagged as bombs. Funny thing, throwers – sorry, I mean baggage handlers — don’t worry about ticking ’cause modern bombs don’t tick. But, when a suitcase vibrates, then the thrower’s gotta call the police.
Nine times out of ten it’s an electric razor, but every once in a while…it’s a dildo.
Of course it’s company policy never to imply ownership in the event of a dildo… always use the indefinite article a dildo, never your dildo.
While waiting for my plane from Cairns, Australia to Darwin and then eventually home to Canada, I witnessed a man wearing nothing but shorts attempt to navigate through security with a 10-foot-long tree branch, with his belongings hanging from one end, tied in his shirt. Needless to say he did not get far.
Mid 30’s man with a deep-ass southern drawl: he’s only got a backpack with him and all that’s inside is a two-foot-long black dildo and a giant aerosol can of butane. I wish I were making this up.
While I have not worked security, I did load airplanes.
Weirdest thing I’ve (un)loaded was a raven. No, it didn’t quoth, but I sure was glad I had heavy duty work gloves!
I worked at the counter in HK airport for a bit over 2 years.
I saw a Mongolian delegation try to take about 5 crossbows through.
Saw a man come off a flight with a rifle.
I’ve seen people with cooler bags of breast milk.
I saw a rabbi with one of these and when questioned over what it was he happily whipped it out of its cover, raised it high into the air and gave it a toot, which we were all in hysterics over.
A common tactic is to put porn in the bag so that the person searching feels uncomfortable and wants to get it done faster, hence not being thorough.
That said I’ve seen someone fill an old laptop with ripped up papers to stop his knife he had hidden in there from moving. He had porno mags in his bag on top of everything and was acting shady in general, so I was thorough in my search. Looking at the laptop I could see papers through the fan vent. My supervisor wanted to wave it off as something normal (who puts papers in their laptop, not normal). So I go to a different supervisor and we take that sucker apart, finding the knife hidden inside. This guy gets taken by the FBI and I later get an award for doing my job properly (which is special at the TSA). I’ve since quit, management at BOS is a cesspool of morons.
My sister worked TSA a few years ago. Mostly she just found people bringing in too much liquid or aerosol cans or whatever, but apparently, people quite often bring whole frozen turkeys through security. She once scanned a bag that was full of turkeys and dildos. In the same bag, just mixed in together. What a delicious seasoning!
Can I bring a metal detector through the metal detector?
My father used to work for Canada customs and he said their biggest bust wasn’t drugs, it wasn’t guns, it wasn’t even exotic animals.
It was an Italian man who was arrested for illegally importing tens of thousands of dollars in fine Italian linens.
When I was working for USAir, TSA notified us that one of our passengers was flying with a checked bag that had around $6,000 cash. It wasn’t in a bundle, or banded together, but just $50s and $100s strewn throughout the bag. The bag looked like the passenger had just thrown random belongings in it without seriously packing, and there was no organization (clothes weren’t folded, etc).
They searched him again, didn’t find anything else, and though it was a suspicious way to travel with money it wasn’t illegal so they let him go. They did give him the cash to hand carry, just because it’s stupid to have cash in a checked bag.
32. Ah, the irony…
Recently on a flight I was working as a baggage handler, someone had a bunch of weed in their bag. I lifted it and held it close to my chest as it was heavy and it reeked of marijuana. It was a domestic flight so I didn’t really care. However, there were 10+ Mounties on the flight home from a huge cop funeral that took place the day before. Made me laugh at how poorly the weed was sealed and the irony of it going on a flight with a ton of cops.
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