Fireworks – Are prohibited from being transported by air as they are classed as explosives and pyrotechnic devices.
The U.S. Department of Transportation, Title 49 CFR, governs and is the regulatory authority for the transportation of all hazardous materials in commerce, on public highways and waterways and in the airspace of the United States. This includes the regulatory guidance of transportation of such materials by private aircraft, air taxi/charter, and airline passengers and all cargo operations under FAR Parts 91, 121, and 135.
The transportation of any defined hazardous material by private general aviation aircraft, while not totally prohibited (note that many materials are, in fact, prohibited), does carry certain risks and should not be considered, unless absolutely necessary.
As always, feel free to call AOPA's Pilot Information Center at 800/USA-AOPA (872-2672) with questions.
FAR Parts 121 and 135 have specific training requirements for crews to complete before carrying hazardous materials, and crews must maintain this training annually as long as they transport the materials. Part 91 operators are not required to be trained and certified under the 49 CFR regulations; however, the transportation of hazardous materials in general aviation aircraft is confined to excepted and limited quantities of materials approved and permitted to be shipped by air.
Here are some specific defined terms from the 49 CFR regulations:
The Part 172.101 Hazardous Materials Table defines product names, descriptions, classification, and quantities permitted. The following is a list of common hazardous materials that are likely to be transported by private aircraft.
There are nine classes and sub-classes of defined hazardous materials. The classes are:
Dangerous When Wet
6.1- inhalation hazard
Poison Inhalation Hazard
6.1- other than inhalation hazard
Part 175 – Carriage by Aircraft
The regulations concerning transportation of hazardous materials specifically by any aircraft are found in 49 CFR Part 175. The table of contents is reproduced below to give an outline of what is contained in that part. The information displayed is not a complete listing of the regulations, but instead a list of points thought by the AOPA to be important for General Aviation.
Sec. 175.5 Applicability
This part applies to the acceptance for transportation, loading and transportation of hazardous materials in any aircraft in the United States and in aircraft of United States registry anywhere in air commerce.
Sec. 175.10 Exceptions
Even though a private or general aviation business aircraft operating under Part 91 is, in fact, a private aircraft, the movement of this aircraft at public use airports, parking at public FBOs, and flying in the national airspace system, exposes the general public to the dangers of these materials. Fire fighters, rescue personnel, and others are at unnecessary risk when hazardous materials are transported and in aircraft not in compliance with the regulations. In the event of any aircraft incident or accident, there can be serious dangers to aircraft, crew, passengers and the general public. Therefore, compliance with the regulations is required.
Note: For non-pressurized general aviation aircraft flying at 9,000 feet msl, the pressure inside a plastic bottle/container or aerosol will be greater than at sea level. Therefore the possibility of an in-flight accident is greater. Please be guided accordingly, and do not transport excessive quantities beyond what the regulation allows.
Unless the mandatory training required by 49 CFR 172.704 for packaging hazardous material has been received, do not attempt to pack any hazardous material for transport by aircraft. This includes, but is not limited to, forwarding any hazardous material by United Parcel Service air or ground or FedEx by air or ground transportation. Use an approved hazardous material packaging firm.
Mandatory training requirements for Part 135 certificate holders are listed in Subpart K of 135.501, 503, 505, and 507, and mandatory training requirements for Part 121 certificate holders are listed in Subpart Z of 121.1001, 1003, 1005, and 1007.
The businesses listed below may be contacted for assistance required to obtain special packing boxes or containers for any class of hazardous materials or to have any material classified as hazardous packaged on your behalf.
AOPA thanks our members for their continued support in protecting the freedom to fly.