The last time I traveled to The Land of Hope and Glory, British customs found a single .22 in the corner of my carry-on. They assured me it was a big deal. Legally, the cartridge was “part of a gun.” OK then. A little later the MP5-wielding security team told me “this happens all the time,” what with U.S. soldiers flying hither and yon. They let me go. After lots of palaver. So I completely understand the thought process of the United Airlines pilot flying to Munich last week who suddenly discovered he was carrying ammo on board . . .
The incident unfolded aboard a flight from Houston to Munich in June.
After forgetting he had the ammunition in his luggage, the pilot initially put the bullets in a garbage can, an official with knowledge of the investigation said.
A passenger saw the bullets in the trash, reported it to a flight attendant, who then told the captain, according to the official. That’s when the captain flushed the ammunition down a toilet.
The pilot reported what happened after landing in Munich, and German authorities retrieved the bullets from the plane, the official said.
United acknowledged this week that a pilot had “improperly disposed of ammunition during a flight last month from Houston to Munich.”
“We are reviewing the incident, and the pilot remains an employee,” the airline said in a statement.
According to cnn.com, “eligible crew members are not allowed to bring firearms or ammunition when flying outside the United States or when not on duty.” Because no terrorist would ever attack an airplane flying out of the United States, right?