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Old 08-08-2016, 09:51   #16
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Re: Inflatable PFD on airplane?

One thing TSA does not do is distinguish between different size PFDs. Mine is a 35lbs-float offshore model with a pretty big 33g cartridge. Seems like FedEx and UPS don't like the rearming kit - WestMarine has flagged it as hazardous and does ground shipping only. This, quite frankly, seems stupid, as the actual life vest (with a cartridge included) does not get singled out as hazardous material and does get shipped via air.

Oh well, at least my rearming kit is "only" $30 so it's probably not worth starting an international incident over this. It's more of a hassle getting lucky and finding the needed make/model rearming kit at one's destination.

Matthias
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Old 08-08-2016, 16:46   #17
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Re: Inflatable PFD on airplane?

[QUOTE=GlobalPlayer;2184269]Can an inflatable PFD legally and/or safely travel on an airplane? Assume that a cartridge is installed and activated, of course.

Thanks for any insight,
Matthias


The reason why you get so many conflicting answers to this question is because, (I am given to understand), any one of the following can refuse to carry the CO2 cylinder:
Transport authority
airline
local airport manager/controller
local airline manager
local checkin person
pilot (can't imagine this last one actually happening though)

In other words there is never complete certainty it will be allowed because you have to have them all on side (or unaware - risky), and no single piece of paper is going to convince all of them. Having the bits of paper sometimes helps (but can also just complicate things). I have not found phoning beforehand to be of much use; I just get non-committal or negative responses. With second tier airlines where the check-in people don't have good English, you might try just fronting up at check-in and explaining pleasantly and briefly but in technical English what you have in your luggage (pick your phrases carefully: "just to let you know" and "inflatable lifejacket" are good, "need permission" and "gas cartridge" are not so helpful) . You have at least done the right thing by advising them of what you are carrying. It might still go pear-shaped on you and they refuse to accept the item, but they can hardly fine you for telling them what they wanted to know.

Afterthought: I wonder where in an airport you can dispose of a CO2 cylinder legally and safely?
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Old 08-08-2016, 17:04   #18
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Re: Inflatable PFD on airplane?

You never know what they are going to think. DB Cooper must live on in some of their minds. After almost loosing ours at a checkpoint I will never fly with one again
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Old 08-08-2016, 18:09   #19
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Re: Inflatable PFD on airplane?

We have traveled to BVI with inflatable life jackets a couple of times on American Airlines in checked luggage.

We were advised by AA to be sure the jacket is not armed. We stored the CO2 cartridges in a Ziploc bag next to the jackets.

Note advisory that TSA may confiscate the life jacket.

https://www.aa.com/i18n/travel-info/...cted-items.jsp
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Old 09-08-2016, 07:16   #20
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Re: Inflatable PFD on airplane?

Have had only one problem flying in the US.. Before the full integration of the companies, American said OK and US Airways said no, so when I bought a ticket on the American website4 but turned out the flight was on a US Airways flight, took a lot of talking. They finally gave in.

Mexico is a different story. They say no and will confiscate if they find it in your luggage. Got busted once and made it through once. If you get a direct fiught from the US not an issue, problem was when we had 2 separte flight s connecting through Mexico City. They took one set (cartridges only) and let the other go through.

Bill
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Old 09-08-2016, 07:49   #21
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Re: Inflatable PFD on airplane?

Yes just advise security you have a CO 2 (carbon dioxide) cartridge in your checked luggage and it's for an inflatable flotation device.
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Old 09-08-2016, 08:43   #22
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Re: Inflatable PFD on airplane?

This topic is very informative. I honestly never gave my PFD a thought when I sailed to the Bahamas this past winter. I didn't say a word to anybody and everything made it through fine. I actually was more worried about the lithium batteries I have in my strobe and handheld GPS. Didn't say a word about those either and it wasn't an issue. I guess in this case ignorance paid off but it sounds like I was pretty lucky.
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Old 09-08-2016, 11:14   #23
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Re: Inflatable PFD on airplane?

Jive never had an issue, besides airliners have CO 2 cartridges ontheir seats to be used as a life vest.
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Old 10-08-2016, 05:23   #24
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Re: Inflatable PFD on airplane?

[QUOTE=Kim Klaka;2185091]
Quote:
Originally Posted by GlobalPlayer View Post
Can an inflatable PFD legally and/or safely travel on an airplane? Assume that a cartridge is installed and activated, of course.

Thanks for any insight,
Matthias


The reason why you get so many conflicting answers to this question is because, (I am given to understand), any one of the following can refuse to carry the CO2 cylinder:
Transport authority
airline
local airport manager/controller
local airline manager
local checkin person
pilot (can't imagine this last one actually happening though)

In other words there is never complete certainty it will be allowed because you have to have them all on side (or unaware - risky), and no single piece of paper is going to convince all of them. Having the bits of paper sometimes helps (but can also just complicate things). I have not found phoning beforehand to be of much use; I just get non-committal or negative responses. With second tier airlines where the check-in people don't have good English, you might try just fronting up at check-in and explaining pleasantly and briefly but in technical English what you have in your luggage (pick your phrases carefully: "just to let you know" and "inflatable lifejacket" are good, "need permission" and "gas cartridge" are not so helpful) . You have at least done the right thing by advising them of what you are carrying. It might still go pear-shaped on you and they refuse to accept the item, but they can hardly fine you for telling them what they wanted to know.

Afterthought: I wonder where in an airport you can dispose of a CO2 cylinder legally and safely?
Kim,
You're correct on who can refuse, but the most common is the check TSA jerk at the checkpoint. You can appeal his decision and meet with the head of security if you request. I used to do that in my day job ANYTIME they mouthed off or got confrontational or wanted to touch me. Worked every time, but took time to do it. But I did have a bit of authority.

Security has gotten a bit better to a point, but still some bad apples out there. Flying is not what it used to be and I avoid it at all costs. I don't do international anymore for that reason... I've seen enough of the world and need to explore the US more.

Shipping is another option, but has gotten prohibitively expensive, and pickup is a PITA.
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Old 10-08-2016, 14:20   #25
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Re: Inflatable PFD on airplane?

Related story, though not about a PDFs. Security screening in different countries can vary a lot...even from one peson to the next in line! Case in point:

Buddy and I flew in from USA and Panama respectively for a fishing trip in Nicaragua. Both had fishing rods in travel cases. Zero problems at any border until we were leaving Nicaragua...I breezed right thru, rod and all. He was next in line and they wanted to confiscate his fishing rod. Without adequate forethought, I turned and said..."but you let mine thru"...life needs a rewind button...they promptly confiscated my rod too!

We worked it out in the end, but its funny...in retrospect.
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Old 11-08-2016, 01:00   #26
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Re: Inflatable PFD on airplane?

[QUOTE=Kim Klaka;2185091]
Quote:
Originally Posted by GlobalPlayer View Post
Can an inflatable PFD legally and/or safely travel on an airplane? Assume that a cartridge is installed and activated, of course.

Thanks for any insight,
Matthias


The reason why you get so many conflicting answers to this question is because, (I am given to understand), any one of the following can refuse to carry the CO2 cylinder:
Transport authority
airline
local airport manager/controller
local airline manager
local checkin person
pilot (can't imagine this last one actually happening though)

In other words there is never complete certainty it will be allowed because you have to have them all on side (or unaware - risky), and no single piece of paper is going to convince all of them. Having the bits of paper sometimes helps (but can also just complicate things). I have not found phoning beforehand to be of much use; I just get non-committal or negative responses. With second tier airlines where the check-in people don't have good English, you might try just fronting up at check-in and explaining pleasantly and briefly but in technical English what you have in your luggage (pick your phrases carefully: "just to let you know" and "inflatable lifejacket" are good, "need permission" and "gas cartridge" are not so helpful) . You have at least done the right thing by advising them of what you are carrying. It might still go pear-shaped on you and they refuse to accept the item, but they can hardly fine you for telling them what they wanted to know.

Afterthought: I wonder where in an airport you can dispose of a CO2 cylinder legally and safely?

right on brother
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Old 25-09-2016, 12:19   #27
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Re: Inflatable PFD on airplane?

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Originally Posted by Chuck Hawley View Post
As I recall, the actual regulation says something about "with permission of the aircraft operator" which was always sort of vague in my mind. Not the "pilot in command" or the "airline". I suspect that airlines can enforce tighter requirements.

Try shipping parachute flares sometime...
Same for Delta. They have a long list of things you can not check nor put in baggage.

You need to check airlines web site.





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Old 25-09-2016, 14:25   #28
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Re: Inflatable PFD on airplane?

Another link on this topic. The chart on the link does show that PFD has catridges are allowable, but as Chuck Hawley mentioned up above, the text at the top of the chart also says other rules by the airlines and other countries may supersede this.

"In general, U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) regulations prohibit passengers and crewmembers from carrying hazardous materials (dangerous goods) aboard commercial aircraft. The table below lists the exceptions that allow passengers and crewmembers to carry a limited amount of hazardous materials in carry-on and/or checked baggage. Though allowable by DOT regulations (see 49 CFR, section 175.10), some of the items listed here may, at times, be prohibited/limited in the aircraft cabin by Transportation Security Administration (TSA) security rules (see www.tsa.gov). Individual airlines and other nations may also have more restrictive rules on what passengers can carry aboard the aircraft. See www.faa.gov/go/packsafe for additional guidance on hazmat in baggage."

http://www.faa.gov/about/office_org/...s_and_crew.pdf

This also shows other prohibited items. (Example: Leave your huge can of Bear Spray at home.) and because it is illustrated, I suggest showing this to your guests or family members, such as teens.

This is particularly important about the nature of compressed gas items. Sailors are concerned about bringing aboard a small CO2 canister for our inflatable PFD.

The TSA agent will be concerned about flammable gases or aerosols, such as a can of spray paint, WD40, bug spray etc.

A can of whipped frosting or insect repellant or sunblock spray is allowable, so not all fun or necessary items are prohibited.

Oddly enough, a woman's hair curling iron with flammable gas cylinder IS allowed as carryon item.
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Old 15-12-2016, 17:17   #29
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Re: Inflatable PFD on airplane?

Eliminate the stress. Just take out the cartridge and replace at the other end.
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Old 15-12-2016, 17:54   #30
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Re: Inflatable PFD on airplane?

While the US airline industry is supposed to follow UN and IATU international standards, by treaty obligation, the reality is that the airline carrier has always had the discretion to say what you can or cannot bring aboard the cabin. And I think it was only a year or two ago that the TSA finally issued the edict that CO2 carts in PFDs (what the UN calls "essential life saving equipment") are to be allowed in the cabin. At the discretion of the inspector. The inspector still makes the first and final judgement call, you can wave anything you want at them, but their supervisor will NEVER overrule them. And some of the inspectors really are dumb enough to pull the manual inflation cord just to make sure of what it does. Bottom line, remove the cartridge and stow it in the PFD, clearly labeled or in the original packaging, especially if that's a replacement. And then consider shipping one ahead, or ordering it from a vendor at your destination, in case you must. If you have any checked baggage, put the cartridge or spare in that. And consider asking the airline if you can "cockpit check" the PFD or the inflator. These days it is rare, but the pilot still has the discretion to carry pretty much anything in the flight deck. You might find a pilot who also sails, and will not mind doing this.
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