CEW’s (Tasers) are not allowed on Airplanes
Conducted Electrical Weapons (CEW’s) are not allowed to be carried by Law Enforcement on passenger airplanes in the US.
Many of you know that I am a Non-lethal Weapons Instructor for the Army, which includes Conducted Electrical Weapons (CEW’s) among other use of force tools. After receiving this notice from TASER International about this issue, I felt it was important for Emergency Managers to also be aware of the policy issues that might arise during the response planning process.
CEW’s are not allowed to be carried by Law Enforcement on passenger airplanes in the US, even though firearms are. The IATA Dangerous Goods Regulations for commercial airplanes forbids the carrying of CEWs in both your carryon AND checked luggage on commercial airplanes: “Electro shock weapons (e.g. Tasers) containing dangerous goods such as explosives, compressed gases, lithium batteries, etc., are forbidden in carry-on baggage or checked baggage or on the person.” No exception is made for law enforcement officer. These IATA regulations were adopted by the U.S. Department of Transportation’s PHMSA in 2012. TASER International, along with the U.S. Department of Interior (DOI) and the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (BATFE) have all written to the PHMSA requesting that the prohibition against officers’ carrying TASER CEWs aboard airplanes be revised. Unfortunately, each of these requests has been denied.
If the prohibition against officers carrying CEWs on airplanes affects your agency, TASER International encourages you and your agency to also submit a request for a rule change with PHMSA. If enough agencies advise PHSMA of the repercussions of the regulation on the law enforcement community then the PHMSA may consider a rule change.
A special thank you goes out to TASER International for continuing to be on the cutting edge of both technology and policy.