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Old 08-08-2007, 04:17 PM
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Question Can CO2-Inflatable PFDs Be Transported on Airlines?

Has anyone had any experience transporting on a commercial airline in carry-on or checked baggage a PFD equipped with its CO2 cartridge? As my Forum name pretty well indicates, I generally have to fly to the Rockies fishing locations I prefer. Probably should have thought of this before buying an inflatable belt.
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Old 08-08-2007, 07:41 PM
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Default Re: Can CO2-Inflatable PFDs Be Transported on Airlines?

Fly2Fish, When going through security at Pttsburgh on the way to Canada, I was stoped and had to open my duffel and take out the PFD. They then handled it as though it was a bomb and it took 2 nudges from my buddy and all the restraint I could muster to tell them it was not a bomb. I told them exactly what it was. Before you knew it there were 3 security personnel around the jacket. They removed the CO2 cartridge as well as the spare and told me if I wanted them back to write. So, I went on my way. Where we went had no places to buy another cartridge. I also told them if I drowned it was their fault. I don't pack a PFD anymore. Incidently, I did also have a problem bring in framed flies. That went through after a detailed explanation. Hope this helps and check with the airline as things may have changed in the past 3 years. Good luck. Frank
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Old 08-09-2007, 02:06 AM
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Default Re: Can CO2-Inflatable PFDs Be Transported on Airlines?

Hi Fly2Fish,

I have not tried to fly with one. You might get by with it in checked luggage. Unless you are at a large airport that scans all checked baggage you might get away with it. The problem is you could get your luggage broken into and your vest confiscated. Check with your airline on how to handle it. I would ship it ahead if you can.
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Old 08-09-2007, 08:40 AM
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Default Re: Can CO2-Inflatable PFDs Be Transported on Airlines?

I tried to take one, flying into British Columbia with my son a couple of summers ago. The cartridges were confiscated, making the PFD useless.

I drive whenever possible for my hunting and fishing trips. Freedom. Couldn't drive to where we were headed though. Great trip anyway.

Regards, Guy
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Old 08-10-2007, 08:07 PM
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Default Re: Can CO2-Inflatable PFDs Be Transported on Airlines?

If you know where you will be staying it would be cheaper and you will have better insurance if you sent the inflatable before hand by UPS. They will warranty damages better than the airlines and the shipping cost will be much cheaper. good luck
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Old 08-10-2007, 08:59 PM
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Default Re: Can CO2-Inflatable PFDs Be Transported on Airlines?

On the lighter side about the airlines and security: I had my luggage held for a day as they inspected my Mojo Mud. Mojo Mud is a tugsten soft weight made in Bailey, CO.
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Old 08-11-2007, 12:32 AM
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Default Re: Can CO2-Inflatable PFDs Be Transported on Airlines?

Thanks SilverDoc, Frank, Guy M & Hardhat for all your helpful anecdotes and suggestions. I did some further TSA/FAA Regulation research plus some calls to TSA. Bottom line is that a self-inflating lifejacket with no more than two CO2 cartridges (& an additional 2 spare CO2 cartridges) can be carried onto the aircraft or in checked baggage with the permission of the airline carrier (this was not a problem when I checked with Continental as a hypothetical).

Since it's been my recent experience that TSA personnel on the ground don't necessarily give a **** what the Regulations stipulate (lost an heirloom lighter in checked baggage despite being approved for airline transport ), I would suggest printing out and carrying with you in your carry-on along with the inflatable vest & CO2 cartridge(s) a print-out of the following link: url=http://www.faa.gov/about/office_org/headquarters_offices/ash/ash_programs/hazmat/media/MaterialsCarriedByPassengersAndCrew.pdf]]Federal Aviation Administration[/url. This is the pictoral equivalent of the actual Regulations at Title 49, Chapter I,Part 175, Sec. 175.10 (a) (11).

Despite all this, I still think that the advice of several of you to advance ground-mail via UPS or other carrier the CO2 cartridges to your destination is the most foolproof way to handle this, but the above is an alternative when advance ground-mailing is not feasible.
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Old 08-11-2007, 10:10 AM
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Red face Re: Can CO2-Inflatable PFDs Be Transported on Airlines?

For some reason the link I posted in my previous post for the official U.S. Government publication allowing life jackets with CO2 cartridges to be carried on airlines in either checked or carry-on baggage did not "work" when I tested it myself, so let's try that URL link again: http://www.faa.gov/about/office_org/...ersAndCrew.pdf
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Old 10-16-2007, 03:54 PM
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Default Re: Can CO2-Inflatable PFDs Be Transported on Airlines?

Just to follow up with some recent practical experience on carrying PFDs with CO2 cartridges onboard airlines, I recently took in my carry-on baggage a Sospenders inflatable waistbelt-vest, including its one CO2 cartridge and one spare cartridge. (I also sent ahead via UPS Ground to my motel destination 2 extra CO2 cartridges as a precaution). The Transportation Security Administration carry-on baggage screener detected the CO2 cartridges and said they were "forbidden", until I showed him my print-out of the TSA Regulation I previously linked in this thread, as well as the duplicate FAA Regulation, both of which clearly state that a PFD with up to two CO2 cartridges plus an additional two spare cartridges is allowed for either checked or carry-on baggage. The screener took note of it, said this must be a new regulatory change (it wasn't) and allowed me to carry it onboard with me without further incident. Of course, I suppose it's possible that a TSA screener could decide not to comply with the written Regulations, but carrying a copy clearly helped me and I would strongly recommend doing so. For the same reason I would not put CO2 cartridges in checked baggage, since you would not be there to argue the issue if a checked-baggage screener decided to remove them (& at $16 a pop, they're not really throwaway items). Before my return flight, however, I sent all four CO2 cartridges back home via USPS First Class, since there was no need for them to be there for me upon my arrival home.

If anyone wants a copy of my print-out with the TSA Regulation on one side and the FAA Regulation on the other allowing airline transportation of CO2-inflatable PFDs, let me know and I'll e-mail you a scanned copy of mine.
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Old 10-17-2007, 10:35 AM
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Default Re: Can CO2-Inflatable PFDs Be Transported on Airlines?

Nice find about the CO2 cartridges. If it isn't too much trouble I would like a copy. fesmd@atlanticbb.net. Thanks again. Frank
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