Liquids rules to be relaxed
WINNIPEG—Better screening technology means air travellers soon may be able to take some liquids on Canadian flights starting in January.
Federal Transport minister Lisa Raitt said an international working paper by Australia, Canada, and the U.S. presented to the International Civil Aviation Organization recommends relaxing the rules around carry-on liquids.
Technology now has caught up and airports can better screen liquid items to see if they pose a threat, she noted.
“The paper indicates technology is now in the place where we can start doing trial runs with it,” Raitt said yesterday at a meeting of transportation ministers in Winnipeg.
Airports are to start loosening the rules on select items in January, Raitt added.
The paper suggests the trial begin with essentials such as drugs required during a flight and baby food.
The restrictions on liquids, aerosols, and gels followed a foiled 2006 plot to blow up a flight using liquid explosives disguised as a common beverage.
The paper said Australia, Canada, and the U.S. now have technology to better screen carry-on liquids.
Banning all liquids from carry-on luggage has been inconvenient and frustrating for some air travellers, Raitt noted.
“People are concerned about the long line-ups,” she said.
“Sometimes people are a little frustrated—I’m going through and I forgot that bottle of perfume I bought and now I have to get rid of it because I don’t have a carry-on bag.
“That’s where we eventually want to get.”
Security can start screening liquids over 100 millilitres and, if they are cleared, can return them to the passenger, the paper said.
Travellers carrying liquids through security still will be taking a chance, though.
If a liquid can’t be cleared by the technology, the paper said it still could be confiscated.