Delta changes gun policy

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Delta Air Lines has changed its policy for guns in checked bags.

The Atlanta-based airline has a new requirement that guns checked as baggage be picked up at the baggage service office upon arrival.

“Delta is committed to the safety of our customers and employees,” Delta said in a written statement. “Every day we look for ways to refine processes and procedures with the goal to improve safety and the overall travel experience.”

News of the change comes in the wake of the shooting at the Fort Lauderdale airport in January. A Marietta woman was killed in the airport shooting.

The shooting at the Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport occurred at the airport’s baggage claim area at Terminal 2, where Delta operates, and showed the vulnerabilities of “soft target” areas outside security screening.

The incident also highlighted the fact that passengers can legally pack guns in checked baggage — and access them after claiming their bags.

The FBI said Esteban Santiago flew on a one-way ticket from Alaska to Fort Lauderdale with a gun and ammunition in a case in checked luggage, according to the Associated Press. Authorities say he picked up the case, loaded the gun in a bathroom and came out firing at travelers.

Some called for increased security to prevent such incidents at airports.

Delta’s policy on “shooting equipment” also says: “Until further advised, passengers departing Brussels, Belgium are not allowed to check weapons including, antique, sporting, hunting or toy rifles in their checked baggage.”

Delta recently restarted its flights from Atlanta to Brussels, one year after the terrorist attacks in Brussels that included bombing at the airport. It had stopped flying the Atlanta-Brussels route after the attacks in March 2016, and resumed its New York-Brussels flights in April 2016.


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