NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — The Transportation Security Administration says that explosives experts at Newark Liberty Airport discovered five grenades in a passenger’s bag on Saturday.

The TSA said the grenades were determined to be “inert” and that the Belgium-bound passenger surrendered her items to officials. There was no impact to airport operations, the agency said.

Officials with the agency also announced that they discovered yet another credit card knife in the wallet of a passenger headed to Los Angeles on Saturday. The knife, the TSA said, was similar to one confiscated on November 22 during the Thanksgiving travel week.

In a news release regarding the grenades, TSA officials reminded passengers to review a list of prohibited items on the agency’s homepage or download the free My TSA app.

Despite the finds, the TSA has been under scrutiny lately following accusations by a pair of elderly women who claimed they were violated during TSA screening checkpoints at John F. Kennedy Airport late last month.

Lenore Zimmerman, 85, claims she was strip searched after asking for a patdown due to her defibrillator. The TSA released a statement Sunday, apologizing to Zimmerman, who lives most of the year in Long Beach, but disputing her story.

“TSA contacted the passenger to apologize that she feels she had an unpleasant screening experience; however, TSA does not include strip searches in its protocols and a strip search did not occur in this case,” the statement read.

Ruth Sherman, an 88-year-old from Florida, said she endured a similar experience when screeners wanted to check the bulge from her colostomy bag.

Do you think the TSA is doing a good job of keeping you safe at the airport?  Share your thoughts in the comments section…

Comments (32)
  1. Aazoba Yuzuki says:

    TSA hiring people to make em look good?

  2. fred sanford says:

    For all you lazy people who just have to comment, I looked it up at
    Hand Grenades are not allowed, and their is no exclusion for “inert”

    The prohibition on firearm replicas says “realistic replicas” are not allowed.
    So the dumb azz that detained the teen with the embrodered gun was not following the procedures.

    1. Tom Campbell says:

      In the early 90’s at Heathrow, an old lady was found to have a live ‘Mills Bomb’ from the WW1 battlefields in her handbag – she’d been on a tour of the battlefields in France where her husband had been killed and was bringing the grenade home to Belfast as a souvenir. I expect the lady in the Newark incident also thought that she had a legitimate reason to transport the inert articles – she’s probably a trainer. We’re only told that she declared the items not if they were in her hold or carry-on baggage. Either way, it’s difficult for trainers to move training aids around the world, perhaps there should be some degree of lattitude here. T.

      1. EarnanM says:

        No “trainer” would be using demilled grenades such as these. Trainers would be using either obviously inert—light blue paint job and prominent “INERT” markings—or dummies with the proper paint job and markings—olive green paint with yellow stripes and “HE” markings—to appear to be live grenades.

        These are just surplus store junk, novelties for sale to anyone. This woman was no “trainer,” just a clueless idiot whose 25w brain couldn’t see there being a problem with taking a “hand grenade” on board an airliner, 10 years after 9/11 or not.

    2. seagull says:

      what a stupid remark……You would probably love to cram into a cattle car to travel too, if TSA told you it would “protect” you.

      1. Tom Campbell says:

        Well, y’know, a little Tabun would do a lot for the travelling public, there’d be fewer in the line after a while and the rest of us could get on with business! The bye products could be processed into hydrocarbon fuel to keep the system going.

  3. Tom Campbell says:

    So, these inert grenades…you only have to add explosive, a fuse and detonator to make them work…were confiscated by the TSA? Can’t they afford proper training aids?

    1. EarnanM says:

      Since these “inert” grenades not infrequently show up filled with explosives and fitted with a new fuze, TSA justifiably didn’t think they should be carried on an aircraft.

      Maybe you’d be OK with them letting guns through the security checkpoint, as long as there was an orange plug stuck in the muzzle to make them look like toys?

      1. Tom Campbell says:

        This particular article is a bit like a Grenade, we used to call them a Cadbury’s, everyone got a bit and that is what this article does, it highlights a very small number of poorly reported incidents to make the same old Republican point, that the TSA should be replaced with a Privatized system that would solve all problems while generating excessive revenue for a few lucky shareholders……now where have we seen that paradigm before, hmmmmmm let me think, possibly post 2001? Y’know, Churchill once said (remember he was half American) “You can always trust the Americans to do the right thing; but only after they’ve exhausted all other possibilities!” Let’s not revisit the past eh?

  4. Geo says:

    Since its inception the TSA has saved thousands of us. At what cost? Did you want to be on a plan that someone dressed like an 85 year old slips through? Or on one that doesn’t X Ray, doesn’t look into not common behavior? Having cleaned up an Airplane explosion I have no problem when they ask me to step aside for more information a pat down or a hand swab to determine if I am safe to put on a plane. I only draw the line at a colostomy.

    1. Ed says:

      I can understand it somewhat but one of the two old ladies this happened to was in a walker. They could have just as easily ran the handheld metal detector over her. The pregnent teen had a embroidered gun on her purse and they detained her because “she was a threat” but this lady who is not from the United States had inert grenades which the only difference is they done have explosives or a detonator in them is not considered a threat and allowed to get on the plane. The TSA has to many mistakes, either they go way to far as they did with the old ladies and the teen girl or they don’t go far enough with the lady who had inert grenades…

    2. seagull says:

      Saved????From what? We need to be saved from them. I have not flown for over a year because of that scene. Guess that saves me a little money….so much for the economy.

  5. Ed says:

    So let me get this straight, the TSA detained a pregnant teen with embroidered gun on her purse because she was a threat. The TSA strip searches a 85 year old lady because she did not want to go through the full body scanner, another threat. The same TSA let some lady who has 5 non working grenades get on airplane after she gives them to the tsa agent because she is no threat…. Awesome I feel safer already. TSA=Totally Stupid Airheads….

    1. Clark A says:

      Don’t you mean TSA = Totally Stupid Assholes?

      1. Ed says:

        Yes it does lol…

  6. pete says:

    Big Deal!!! For the discovery of paperweights we are spending Billions, and also have to take the very insulting treatments of these losers. They had to join the TSA, because they have even been kicked out of welfare. Where are our political representatives who claim to take care of us sooo well?? Army/Navy stores have boxes of these paperweights, how did they ship them and get them through inspection? Just because only an Idiot would not see what they really are: Paperweights!

    1. EarnanM says:

      They’re paperweights until someone closes off the hole in the bottom—welding a plug or casting some lead is the usual method—fills the grenade body with blackpowder or gunpowder, and sticks the primer from a shotgun shell in the firing mechanism. About 15 minutes work for any teenage pyro and not an uncommon find at booby-trapped drug stashes or grow-ops.

  7. George Scott says:

    If they were inert, how can they by classified as grenades ???

    1. EarnanM says:

      People see them and think they’re live grenades.

      Even people who know that these are sandblasted demilitarized training grenades know that it is trivially easy to fill these “inert” grenades with black powder and add a live fuze, making them into less-effective but still very lethal improvised grenades.

      1. Tom Campbell says:

        I think that we’re probing deeply into the surface of this incident. We are not told if the passenger also had in their possession gunpowder, a primer cap/ fuse. We also don’t know whether or not they were in carry-on or checked baggage. Yes you can reactivate a grenade, you can also cause a Coke can to explode. The point is, there may be a legitimate reason for someone to have such articles in their possession – maybe they couldn’t afford the FedEx costs to transport them in the rear hold!

  8. bob says:

    Yes that’s my “Jim Bowie Paperweight”, why ?

  9. bob says:

    “Pay no heed officer, thats just my Inert AR-15.”

  10. We are all screwed says:

    more hype to cover bad press & to take our rights away.nobody should go through the scanners or be patted down,it’s against our 4th amendment right.the right of the people to be secure in their persons ,houses,papers,& effects against Unreasonable searches &seizures shall not be violated & no warrants shall issue,but upon probable cause,supported by oath or affirmation,& particularly describing the place to be searched ,& the persons or things to be seized. by the way the patriot act is illegal,wake up everybody

  11. Elizabeth Conley says:

    Does anyone here know what “inert” means? It means that the TSA did not find grenades in the passengers bags. The TSA found paperweights that look like grenades.

    It’s bad enough that most of the people reading don’t seem to know what inert means, but apparently the journalist writing the story doesn’t know either.

  12. Liam Skye says:

    Wow! TSA found five novelty paperweights!!! Awesome job, fellas! Hey – that darn foreigner has some inert “lemon” M26 grenades. I haven’t been able to find those paperweights. I just have the baseball and pineapple paperweights. It’s not fair.

    If anybody thought that destroying our personal liberty and the Constitution in the name of an imaginary “threat” wasn’t a good idea, this ought to change their mind! Those things could raise one heck of a welt on your scalp if somebody hit you with one. TSA and DHS has finally produced some tangible results – $25 worth of scrap iron – at the cost of a trillion dollars and the personal liberty of 250 million Americans.

  13. susan says:

    x ray of carry ons and checked baggage has been dratically improved since the tsa was started 10 years ago..i will say however that many tsa agents have an “authority” complex and do unecessary searches..i worked at the airport as a gate agent and i have seen quite a few and even been searched myself..then again, there have been those who should have been searched that were allowed to come down to the is all subject to human error…

  14. Captain Obvious says:

    Maybe the woman with the Grenades didn’t “Look” like a terrorist.

  15. David Fiedler says:

    Sounds like the TSA finally did something right for a change. Now if they could concentrate on real threats instead of security theater, we’d all be better off in this country.

  16. Jones says:

    i dont think particularly think TSA dpes a great job… we did not blow ourselves up. 85 year old ladies from the midwest did not blow us up. That every single citizens rights are taken away because of this, and all this billion dollar industry, and we are humiliated each time we travel, i gotta say, because half the time they are busy yapping away
    no i dont think so. in Germany and England…you dont take your shoes off. i mean
    whats the deal.

  17. gene says:

    scared me for a second

  18. Larry Schwarz says:

    I just don’t know how dumb this passenger could be.All in all I think TSA does a good job.There may be a few rotten apples in the bunch,and those should be dealt with.But overall I do think they are on top of the situation.It seems most of the complaints about TSA come out of Kennedy.I have seen that first hand.I believe this womans story about being stripped searched,and I believe that TSA agent should be fired.But do not blame the whole TSA because of a few bad ones.

  19. thor's hammer says:

    how long after the grenades and knife were found did the passengers say “i didn’t know it was there” or “it wasn’t my bag.” article fails to mention if they were arrested. somewhere more than 1 village is not missing its idiot(s). this really is old people. immediatte dope slaps, and 1 year mandatory jail sentence. next case.

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