Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Liquids and travel restrictions

The U.S. Transportation Security Administration (TSA) has announced an easing of its restrictions against carrying liquids and gels aboard commercial airliners.

According to a Reuters article on Airwise.com:
Under the new plan, travellers may carry drinks and other items purchased in the secure areas of the airport. They also may bring travel-size lip gloss, hand lotion and other toiletries of 90 ml [3 ounces] or less that will be subject to screening and then placed in a small clear plastic bag.

The measure takes effect on Tuesday and is the second time the ban, introduced on August 10, has been revised. Homeland security officials called the latest change a prudent step but said the main provisions will remain in place indefinitely because the threat of attacks on aircraft has not diminished.

"After the initial, total ban, we have learned enough from the UK investigation to say with confidence that small, travel-size liquids are safe to bring through security checkpoints in limited numbers," said Kip Hawley, the Bush administration official overseeing US transportation security.
Canada has announced a similar change to its carry-on rules.

A USA Today article says that these changes came about after FBI tests that showed that it's highly unlikely that terrorists could bring down a jet with a bomb made from small amounts of fluids.
Jim Kapin, head of health and safety for the American Chemical Society, said small quantities of liquids could not seriously damage an airplane. Even if several terrorists smuggled liquid explosives on board, it is "practically speaking, impossible" to make a bomb on an airplane because of the equipment and expertise required, Kapin said.

Sources: US To Relax Some Carry-On Restrictions - Airwise.com
Canada Relaxes Airport Security Ban - Airport Business
Liquids not as risky as first feared - USA Today

Technorati Tags: , , , , , ,