Concealed carry in airport question

This is a discussion on Concealed carry in airport question within the Concealed Carry Issues & Discussions forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; Over the past week I have had to visit a "municipal" airport to drop and pick up a family member. Both times I was carrying ...

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Thread: Concealed carry in airport question

  1. #1
    New Member Array d gross's Avatar
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    Concealed carry in airport question

    Over the past week I have had to visit a "municipal" airport to drop and pick up a family member. Both times I was carrying concealed (licensed) and the temperature was low enough here in eastern Maine to warrant a Woolrich shirt to cover the OWB holster. The airport is populated with local police officers and TSA personnel 24 hours a day and I walked past them with luggage, wondering if my sidearm might "print" enough to cause a confrontation.
    I have no desire to run afoul of any regulation so have discussed this with some who claim knowledge of applicable laws. I am told that the airport is in effect divided into two parts...the "municipal portion" which includes ticket counters, snack bars, newsstands, etc and the "federal" which starts at the entrance of the TSA inspection area. As I understand it, a CCP holder is governed by local ordinance while in the "municipal" part of the terminal. Of course I would never consider getting close to the TSA "federally controlled" section while carrying. I have no way of knowing if the city has anything on paper addressing this issue or if it is left to patrolling officers to use their own judgement in ensuring the safety of the public. That this could result in arrest, weapon seizure and legal costs is disconcerting, even if the final result was a case thrown out on the grounds of no specific restriction on concealed carry at the airport.
    Our TSA people were on the ball though.....they seized a very small souvenir Swiss army knife on my wife's keyring as I watched with a pistol under my shirt.
    I wonder if anyone on the forum has any knowledge applicable to this specific issue. Looking forward to hearing from members.

    David Gross
    In the woods of Maine

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    VIP Member Array Guantes's Avatar
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    Airport carry, outside of "sterile" areas is normally controlled by state and/or local statutes. Some its ok, some, even the parking lots are off limits. Research yours.
    "I do what I do." Cpl 'coach' Bowden, "Southern Comfort".

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    Senior Member Array 380ACP's Avatar
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    As far as I know, you can legally carry up to the security checkpoint but not beyond. I've done it before. But I'm no lawyer.
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    Member Array 40khammer's Avatar
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    I know in Texas you can carry anywhere in the airport except the "Secured areas." Meaning not beyond the security checkpoint.

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    VIP Member Array Guns and more's Avatar
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    This will devolve into a definition of "terminal".
    My understanding is that the terminal is where you board the plane, after the security checkpoint.
    Otherwise, how could you bring a gun to the ticket counter to declare?

    Regardless of the law, be extra careful of staying concealed, police may need someone to confront that day.

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    Senior Member Array WC145's Avatar
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    Since you said "eastern Maine" I assume you're talking about Bangor, or maybe Bar Harbor. My understanding was that you can carry in the unsecure areas of the airports but to be sure I called and checked with the Bangor PD airport unit and the officer that answered the phone confirmed that. In fact, he was very friendly and animated and not bothered by the question at all. His answer was, and I quote, - "As long as your legal we don't care".

    Obviously, the secure areas are off limits to any weapons at all regardless of airport.

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    Member Array FrankWSweet's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Guns and more View Post
    This will devolve into a definition of "terminal".
    My understanding is that the terminal is where you board the plane, after the security checkpoint.
    Otherwise, how could you bring a gun to the ticket counter to declare?

    Regardless of the law, be extra careful of staying concealed, police may need someone to confront that day.
    No. Florida law, 790.06 (12) defines "terminal" as the entire building, including ticket counters, but specifically allows check-in and baggage-claim.
    [carry is forbidden]inside the passenger terminal and sterile area of any airport, provided that no person shall be prohibited from carrying any legal firearm into the terminal, which firearm is encased for shipment for purposes of checking such firearm as baggage to be lawfully transported on any aircraft

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    Member Array KimBobTex's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 40khammer View Post
    I know in Texas you can carry anywhere in the airport except the "Secured areas." Meaning not beyond the security checkpoint.

    +1+1+1

    The anwer you're looking for is state specific. Answers from anybody not in or pertaining to Maine are worthless to you. Research your state's laws for your answer.

    "Texas" answer above is spot on. I carry multiple times daily (legally concealed) in & out of TX airports for almost 2 years now without a hitch, just never past security check points, ticket counters & baggage claim areas only.
    Asked by a CNN reporter "What do you feel when you shoot a terrorist"?, the Marine sniper simply shrugged & replied "recoil".

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    Senior Member Array Chad Rogers's Avatar
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    I seem to recall in Memphis seeing signs saying you may NOT carry into the airport building.

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    Member Array mrjam2jab's Avatar
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    Airports are not restricted locations in ME....outside the secure zone. The city can't have anything "on paper" prohibiting it as State Preemption prevents that.

    Curious, why did the wife have the knife taken from her?

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    VIP Member Array TN_Mike's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Guantes View Post
    Airport carry, outside of "sterile" areas is normally controlled by state and/or local statutes. Some its ok, some, even the parking lots are off limits. Research yours.
    This is the best advice you'll get on this. Each airport is different. Even the "non-sterile" part of the Memphis Air Port is non-carry. The "non-sterile" parts of the Indianapolis Air Port are not as far as I know. You have to research it and find out, 110% for sure, what the rules are at your air port. Run afoul of them and you are dealing with Federal charges.
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    VIP Member Array rammerjammer's Avatar
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    Here in Omaha our Airport is posted No-Guns.

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    Here where I live we have Glacier International Airport, and the building is very okay to carry in. They do not allow visitors past the screening area, so its no problem for me when I'm dropping or picking someone up.
    "Trouble Never Makes An Appointment"

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    Senior Member Array sdprof's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mrjam2jab View Post
    Airports are not restricted locations in ME....outside the secure zone. The city can't have anything "on paper" prohibiting it as State Preemption prevents that.

    Curious, why did the wife have the knife taken from her?
    Ummm, it's a knife!?
    TSA: Prohibited Items
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    I carry always not because I go places trouble is likely, but because trouble has a habit of not staying in its assigned zone.

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    Member Array JBinMont's Avatar
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    TSA only has authority from the security check point and beyond. They do not have authority in the general area outside of that area.
    "Trouble Never Makes An Appointment"

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