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Flying in the US? Remember to leave your hand grenades at home

You laugh, but a staggering 83 people tried taking explosives aboard aircraft, say TSA

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It will not come as explosive news to most sensible travellers, but US airline passengers have been warned to leave their grenades at home when getting on a flight.

The US Transportation Security Administration (TSA) has issued a stern warning to anyone thinking of bringing their favourite handheld bomb on holiday.

In a blog post, the TSA said it busted 43 people with grenades in carry-on baggage and 40 people who carried them in their checked luggage. The majority of these grenades were inert, replica, or novelty items, but others were actual live smoke, flare and riot grenades – hardly the sort of thing you'd want to go off during a bumpy flight.

The TSA said: "After reading the title of this post, your first thought probably was, 'That’s obvious'. Not always so."

Inert or fake grenades won't actually go bang, the TSA continued, but will cause a security alert which could hold up flights. They would also cause a few interesting scenes on board a plane if someone was to show off their souvenir.

"So remember, real or not, if it looks like a grenade or any other type of explosive device, it cannot be packed in your carry-on or checked baggage," the TSA added."Grenade-shaped belt buckles, lighters, soap, candles, MP3 players, paperweights, inert training grenades, and other items can all look like the real item on the X-ray monitor. Please leave these items at home, or find another way of getting them to your destination."

TSA officers at Dallas Fort Worth actually found a proper 40mm High Explosive Dual Purpose Projectile grenade in a carry-on bag last year, but because the passenger was a soldier who "made a mistake", he was let off with a slap on the wrist.

Most recently, the TSA was in these hallowed pages because of a furore over its pervy scanners, which have since been upgraded so that they highlight only "potentially dangerous objects" rather than bodily features. Nevertheless, one angry techie still found their general security screening far too invasive, and stripped naked in protest. ®

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