Sparklers, Bottle Rockets and Other Fireworks Can Lead to Airport Delays and Fines

WASHINGTON, June 28 /PRNewswire/ — As families prepare for the Fourth of July holiday with its spectacular fireworks displays and summertime celebrations, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) reminds travelers of a number of travel tips to safely and efficiently move through airport security.

One reminder is that fireworks — including sparklers and bottle rockets – - are prohibited in airport sterile areas, in the cabins of aircraft, and in checked baggage stowed in the cargo hold of the aircraft.

This summer, TSA and other aviation partners will welcome more than 200 million air travelers to the nation’s airports during the peak summer travel period from the Memorial Day weekend to Labor Day. To ensure safe and secure travel, TSA is continuing to deploy explosives detection trace portals; deputizing pilots to defend the cockpit; providing screeners with additional training (3 hours per week); and developing new technology and protocols to address existing and future threats.

In addition to fireworks, other common prohibited items include firearms, knives, pocketknives, scissors, lighters, and boxcutters. TSA screeners are still intercepting over one million prohibited items each month, including more than 50 firearms, which result in delays for every passenger at the security checkpoint. Bringing these items to the checkpoint can result in a fine up to $10,000 and possible arrest and imprisonment.

To avoid delays and potential fines, TSA suggests that every passenger check their person and bags as well as those of traveling companions (including children) to make sure that they are free of prohibited items.

TSA’s Summer Travel Tips include:

Do not bring fireworks to the airport. All fireworks are explosive materials and are dangerous if brought onboard an aircraft. They are not permitted in checked or carry-on baggage.

Handle prohibited items properly. Firearms, ammunition, and knives are prohibited at security checkpoints. Pocketknives, pointed scissors, self- defense sprays, boxcutters, and other potential weapons are also prohibited. Please place those items in checked bags or leave them at home. Incendiaries such as lighters are prohibited at checkpoints. In a recent change, lighters without fuel are permitted in checked baggage. For a complete list of prohibited items, visit the TSA Web site at http://www.tsa.gov/.

Be prepared for screening. To maximize efficiency at the checkpoint, stow all metal objects in your carry-on luggage. A useful tip is to bring along a plastic bag to store keys, loose change, and other metal objects in your carry-on. When approaching the checkpoint at most airports, an airline employee or contractor will ask passengers for their boarding pass and government-issued identification. Please have them out and available throughout the screening process.

Be flexible. While security is standardized, not all trips through the checkpoint will be exactly the same because security conditions may vary. Remember, screener activities are designed to protect you, your family and loved ones, and are not meant to be inconvenient.

Security is serious. Recently, TSA has seen an increase in incidents of individuals joking about security at the checkpoint. Any comments about threats to passengers or the aircraft will be taken seriously and could result in criminal or civil penalties.

Prepare before leaving for the airport. Travel tips for parents, persons with special needs and the general public, lists of prohibited items and much more can be found on the TSA Web site at http://www.tsa.gov/. If you know what to expect, the airport security process will be much easier for you and your traveling companions.

For more information on TSA, please see our Web site at http://www.tsa.gov/.

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