Fliers leave behind thousands of items each day at airport security checkpoints. Laptops, briefcases, coats, electronic games, cameras, cellphones, tablets, jewelry, baby car seats and more become part of the forgotten booty.
Surprisingly, few people make the effort to try to get their stuff back, the Transportation Security Administration says.
The agency says it tries to find the rightful owners. If it can't, it will hold lost goods for 30 days to see whether someone comes forward to claim them.
To avoid losing your favorite watch or cellphone, the TSA offers these tips to travelers going through security:
--Tape a business card to your laptop or cellphone.
--Keep small items like watches and keys in your carry-on bag. The little bowls provided at checkpoints should be used for loose change, not valuables.
--Pack jewelry in your carry-on and don't wear it until you've passed through security.
--Report stolen items right away.
--Listen for airport announcements that may describe an item left behind.
Lastly, report the lost item.
--Contact the TSA's lost-and-found office at LAX at (310) 242-9073 if you think you left something at a security checkpoint.
--Contact LAX's lost-and-found office at (424) 646-5678 if you think you lost it somewhere else at the airport.