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Old 11-02-2012, 16:33   #1
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Question Flying with CO2 Cartridges for Inflatable Life Jackets

Hello,

I'm looking for experiences from vacation cruisers who have traveled recently with their inflatable life-jackets.

In Canada and the US the CO2 cartridges are classified under Division 2.2 of Dangerous Goods but have an exemption from the TSA and Transport Canada. However the exemption has an "out clause" that allows the carrier or screener to seize the CO2 cartridges if they so choose.

In Canada the TDG exemption reads:

“With the approval of the air carrier, passengers may bring up to two small carbon dioxide cylinders of carbon dioxide or other suitable gas, per person, fitted into a self-inflating life-jacket for inflation purposes, plus up to two spare cartridges.”

The TSA version is similar.

What are the experience of cruisers traveling with their jackets? Have your CO2 cylinders been confiscated?

Regards,
Brent
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Old 11-02-2012, 16:56   #2
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Re: Flying with CO2 cartridges for inflatable life-jackets

Just tell them when checking in what you have. Done it many times, no issues - at least here in Canada.
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Old 11-02-2012, 17:13   #3
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Re: Flying with CO2 cartridges for inflatable life-jackets

Flew into Puerto Vallarta with mine 6 weeks ago. TSA says that you can have them in your carry on but I check them to avoid any trouble. 1 vest per person and one extra cartridge. Had no trouble at all. Shouldnt considering there is one under every seat on the plane
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Old 11-02-2012, 17:17   #4
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Re: Flying with CO2 cartridges for inflatable life-jackets

This is an area that frustrates me, some airlines allow them , some vacillate

my experience, say nothing , check them in, in 20 years never been stopped. thats includes US, Europe, etc

dave
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Old 11-02-2012, 17:18   #5
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Re: Flying with CO2 cartridges for inflatable life-jackets

Quote:
Originally Posted by goboatingnow View Post
This is an area that frustrates me, some airlines allow them , some vacillate

my experience, say nothing , check them in, in 20 years never been stopped. thats includes US, Europe, etc

dave
I agree, the rules say that they are allowed so I dont bring it up. Just check them
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Old 11-02-2012, 19:48   #6
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Re: Flying with CO2 cartridges for inflatable life-jackets

I check a bag with the inflatable in it, never had a problem. If you carry it on, it is a crap shoot.... as much as I hate checking bags, it is worth it to arrive and not have to find $$$ replacements.
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Old 11-02-2012, 19:51   #7
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Re: Flying with CO2 cartridges for inflatable life-jackets

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Originally Posted by s/v 'Faith' View Post
I check a bag with the inflatable in it, never had a problem. If you carry it on, it is a crap shoot.... as much as I hate checking bags, it is worth it to arrive and not have to find $$$ replacements.
carry on is a no no, despite the TSA etc, I find that airport will detect the canisters and from there its the usual "full body search" procedure.....!, not worth it. anyway I always carrying a sailing knife, tools etc, always have check-in luggage when sailing.

Dave
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Old 11-02-2012, 20:00   #8
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Re: Flying with CO2 cartridges for inflatable life-jackets

First of all, take the CO2 cartridge out before packing. Very unlikely it would somehow self-inflate but it would really suck if it did.

Second, I have done this several times in checked bags and you dont have to tell the airline at all - It is the TSA that has to know - The airlines may well have somebody behind the counter who doesnt know his ass from third base but the TSA people will know the rules. Another thing I do is bring a spare rearming cartridge left in its original packaging. That makes it crystal clear what I have.
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Old 11-02-2012, 20:02   #9
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Re: Flying with CO2 cartridges for inflatable life-jackets

In the US, TSA's website explicitly allows an inflatable pfd and 2 spare cartridges in either carry on or checked luggage. i've done both several times.

i once had grief from a Canadian security person (while boarding a flight to the US) who didn't know the rules, but all that entailed was getting someone from the airline to confirm that everything was kosher. no big deal.
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Old 11-02-2012, 20:12   #10
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Re: Flying with CO2 cartridges for inflatable life-jackets

I always have an inflatable PFD plus 1 spare in my carry on per TSA regs.
Most often, I am asked about this and I explain that I am a delivery captain and never know what I will find when I arrive at my "new" boat. That also explains the handheld GPS, PLB, VHF, assortment of jumper wires, multimeter, duct tape, etc. That, along with a TWIC gets "oh, OK, good luck".
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Old 11-02-2012, 20:29   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BojanglesIV
In the US, TSA's website explicitly allows an inflatable pfd and 2 spare cartridges in either carry on or checked luggage. i've done both several times.

i once had grief from a Canadian security person (while boarding a flight to the US) who didn't know the rules, but all that entailed was getting someone from the airline to confirm that everything was kosher. no big deal.
But there's a get out clause " with the permission of the airline" also the rules allow a TSO to prohibit something not on the list anyway

Dave
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Old 11-02-2012, 20:33   #12
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Re: Flying with CO2 cartridges for inflatable life-jackets

Don't throw them in your laptop case and forget about them at a TSA screening. Ask me how I know.
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Old 11-02-2012, 20:52   #13
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Re: Flying with CO2 cartridges for inflatable life-jackets

i can tell you firsthand that Air Canada and Westjet have no problem with inflatable pfds. As for the US carriers, i've only had positive outcomes withe ones I've flown on, but i can't speak for all carriers.

That said, i can't imagine an airline rejecting a pfd when there are already 100+ of hem on every plane.

i wouldn't sweat it.

Cheers
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Old 11-02-2012, 21:01   #14
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Re: Flying with CO2 cartridges for inflatable life-jackets

Flown a few times with PFDs as carry-on, no problem. But in a couple cases it did require that I educate the TSA person. Go to the TSA website and print out the page that describes allowing of CO2 in PFDs. Then go to the airline website of whichever airline you're flying. It will either have it's own policy allowing PFDs, or it will just refer you to TSA policy. Either way, print that page out too. Bring the printed pages with you, and when the confused TSA kid doesn't know what to do, just show him the printouts. Worse case, he'll call a manager over who will let you through.
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Old 11-02-2012, 21:32   #15
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Re: Flying with CO2 cartridges for inflatable life-jackets

Find the appropriate page on the airline web site, print and carry.

Declare them whether checked or carry on. I always check mine with my bag of safety gear. I have a rigging knife attached.

You may have to go through oversize baggage with an agent beside you.

Works with both Air Canada and WestJet.
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