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Fri, Jul 02, 2004

Please... No Big Bangs This Holiday Weekend

Planes and Fireworks Are Explosive Combination

Leave fireworks behind if you are flying somewhere to celebrate Independence Day, the FAA warned the public.

"People who bring fireworks on airplanes put themselves and fellow passengers at tremendous risk," said FAA Administrator Marion Blakey. "All fireworks are banned, from cherry bombs to poppers, because friction can ignite even the smallest sparkler in the plane’s pressurized atmosphere and lead to a catastrophic fire."

Those who violate the hazardous-materials regulations are subject to civil penalties of up to $32,500 per violation with a minimum fine of $275, and to criminal prosecutions of up to five years in prison with criminal fines of up to $250,000 for individuals and $500,000 for corporations.

The Transportation Security Administration’s increased security screening of cargo, carry-on and checked bags is uncovering many undeclared hazardous materials that likely would not have been discovered otherwise. During the period from April 2003 to May 2004, the FAA opened 7,849 investigations into violations of the Hazardous Materials Regulations. This compares to 2,555 investigations opened in the same time period the previous year.

FMI: www.faa.gov/passengers/baggage.cfm

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