On August 7, the U.S. Transportation Security Administration (TSA) posted a photo to its Twitter account, reminding travelers that fireworks are not allowed in baggage (neither as carry-on or checked baggage). The post was started by someone who thought it was okay to do so, attempting to fly from Orlando to Chicago with 1,290 firecrackers.
More than a thousand firecrackers
The details and a corresponding photo were posted in a tweet by the account of the TSA spokesperson for Florida, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands. This post was then shared by the larger TSA twitter account:
1,290 firecrackers were brought to the@TSAcheckpoint@MCOby a 36-year-old man flying to Chicago. Flammable and explosive items must not be in your carry-on or checked baggage! pic.twitter.com/3J4Kge9j2b
– TSAmedia_SariK is now @TSA_Gulf (@TSA_Gulf) August 7, 2020
As you can see, the person at the center of this incident is an unidentified 36-year-old man flying from Orlando to Chicago. Several airlines operate direct flights between the two major cities, including Frontier, Spirit, United, American and Southwest. However, these details were not disclosed by the TSA.
A potentially unnecessary reminder
While most of our readers are familiar with the travel process, it can’t hurt to review some of the policies set by the TSA. According to the organization’s website,
âCarrying prohibited items can cause delays for you and other travelers, but it can also result in fines and sometimes even arrests. “
The TSA website – and pretty much every airport and airline website has a section on permitted and prohibited items. This can range from the most obvious objects (sharp objects resembling weapons and explosive materials) to the more delicate objects such as liquids in containers larger than 100ml.
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Thus, it is always a good practice to look in your luggage to confirm that nothing has been left in a random pocket or compartment from a previous road trip that may not be cleared for the flight.
The penalty for traveling with fireworks
In fact, the TSA states that having âConsumer fireworks, novelty fireworks, professional fireworks; flares; gunpowder (10 oz or less) â counts as one Security breach and may result in a penalty of $ 350 to $ 2,050. In addition, a criminal reference can be added.
Simple Flying has contacted the TSA spokesperson responsible for the Orlando airport. Below is the response we received confirming that a civil sanction will be imposed:
âYes, the individual will be subject to a civil sanction from the TSA. The fine for wrapping fireworks can range from $ 350 to $ 2,050. We consider fireworks to be a serious risk, whether in your carry-on baggage or in your checked baggage, so they cannot fly!
Referral for criminal investigation and enforcement is appropriate where there appears to be a violation of criminal laws. These are different and distinct from the civil penalties imposed by the TSA.
According to the TSA, the amounts of its civil penalties are based on published penalty guidelines. The proposed penalty amounts are generally set at the lower end of each violation category. In some cases, however, the penalties may be higher due to aggravating circumstances (eg repeated offenses).
Have you ever had something confiscated by airport security? Do you feel it was justified or too unnecessary? Please share your stories with us by leaving a comment.