CAA Welcomes Guilty Verdict For Passenger Carrying Chainsaw


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CAA Welcomes Guilty Verdict For Passenger Carrying Chainsaw

By Daniel Baxter

April 4, 2011 - The UK Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) welcomed the conviction of an airline passenger for attempting to carry a petrol powered chainsaw in hold baggage on a flight out of London Gatwick airport.  

Alan Hanson pleaded guilty at Crawley Magistrates Court on 25 March 2011 to a breach of the Air Navigation Order (Dangerous Goods) Regulations. He was given a conditional discharge and ordered to pay ?1,000 prosecution costs for the incident on 24 May 2010. 

Airport security staff were alerted to the smell of petrol coming from Hanson?s baggage during the loading process of a British Airways flight to Manchester. The baggage was in transit and had previously flown from Bridgetown, Barbados.  

A petrol powered chainsaw was subsequently discovered amongst Hanson?s possessions, with evidence that some petrol had leaked within the suitcase. The baggage was offloaded and seized, whilst the passenger continued on his journey to Manchester, where he was later arrested.

Petrol is forbidden for carriage by air by passengers in both carry-on and checked (hold) baggage. The CAA?s Dangerous Goods Office carried out further investigations and found that the chainsaw tank did indeed contain petrol, despite claims by the passenger that it was empty.

Geoff Leach, Manager of the Dangerous Goods Office, said: ?This case graphically highlights the risks some passengers are prepared to take. This chainsaw contained almost half a liter of a highly flammable liquid that had begun to leak. Passengers and crew should not be endangered in this way. Certain items and substances are banned from carriage on an aircraft for very clear reasons ? they pose an acute risk to flight safety.?


Dangerous goods that must NOT be taken on board an aircraft are: 
? explosives, such as fireworks, flares, toy gun caps;
? gases, such as culinary blowtorches, camping or compressed gas cylinders, tear gas, mace or CS gas devices;
? flammable materials such as petrol, lighter fuel, paint, thinners, non-safety matches, firelighters;
? poisons, such as weed killers, insecticides; and
? corrosives, such as filled car batteries.

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