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View Full Version : This really concerns me-man arrested for transporting ammunition but only primers.


hill billy
12-29-2010, 8:41 PM
http://www.foxnews.com/us/2010/12/28/police-miami-airport-explodes-bag/?intcmp=prn_baynote-js_Man_Arrested_at_Miami_Airport_After_Bullet_Part s_Found_in_Bag

Man has a few hundred live primers in his bag and is arrested for transporting ammunition. This sets a poor precedent. I understand they needed to find something to charge him with but that was a real stretch.

Ron-Solo
12-29-2010, 8:51 PM
Primers are subject to hazardous materials shipping regulations. This individual obviously wasn't following the rules and placed everyone in the aircraft in jeopardy. Primers are considered ammunition components, which is why he was charged as such.

You are required to declare firearms, ammunition, and other hazardous materials when flying. You can't even take filled scuba tanks, and they are only filled with compressed air, not oxygen.

There are specific packaging requirements for ammo on aircraft, and in my opinion, primers that are not packaged properly pose more of a risk than ammunition.

Since some of the primers discharged, my bet is that they weren't packaged correctly.

Plus, his final destination was another country that is not firearms friendly.

Not much of a stretch when you look at it.

ale014
12-29-2010, 9:01 PM
Yes, seems like he was suppose to ship it GROUND back home. Not sure about not having a license though. Always thought you can buy ammo from another state and bring it back, just drive it home. Not sure about this particular situation with not having a commerce license. But i really don't know, so some more info would be greatly appreciated.

Horace Hogsnort
12-29-2010, 10:19 PM
"What concerns me more is why the baggage handlers are so rough with luggage as to ignite the primers inside. This needs to be looked at."

There's probably some diligent agency of the federal government looking into this as we speak!!

Knauga
12-29-2010, 10:24 PM
The man was being held on a charge of traveling in interstate commerce without a license to carry ammunition.

Does somebody NEED a license to travel with ammunition? Unless he told the investigators that he was traveling with them in order to sell them, I would think the ONLY thing he could/should be charged with is failing to declare the ammunition in his bag. Is that even required? You are certainly allowed to check ammunition in your checked baggage when you travel as long as it is in the factory case.

This is pretty disturbing to me.

Ron-Solo
12-29-2010, 10:48 PM
The disturbing part is this guy didn't package them so they wouldn't detonate in the baggage compartment of a passenger plane.

And don't forget, his final destination was Jamaica. You do need special permits to export some things.

Stonewalker
12-29-2010, 10:53 PM
Sorry man, only a dumbass doesn't research the relevant firearms laws of his destination AND doesn't package his caps properly. It doesn't take much to start a life-threatening fire inside a plane. What would have happened had he carried those on instead of checking them? What would have happened had the plane taken off and then the primers exploded?

This has nothing to do with 2A. This isn't even about 4A/TSA violations or anything. I think this man was just a fool

Ron-Solo
12-29-2010, 11:00 PM
Well said, Stonewalker

Knauga
12-29-2010, 11:04 PM
The disturbing part is this guy didn't package them so they wouldn't detonate in the baggage compartment of a passenger plane.

And don't forget, his final destination was Jamaica. You do need special permits to export some things.

But he is being charged with "traveling in interstate commerce without a license to carry ammunition". Since he and his baggage had not left the US, he has not committed a crime in taking them out of the country, attempt or conspiracy sure, but that isn't what he is charged with. There is no "permit" required to travel within the US with loaded ammunition

If they were packaged in their original container, that should be sufficient for safely traveling with them.

TSA (http://www.tsa.gov/travelers/airtravel/assistant/editorial_1666.shtm)
You may only transport firearms, ammunition and firearm parts in your checked baggage. Firearms, ammunition and firearm parts are prohibited from carry-on baggage.

There are certain limited exceptions for law enforcement officers who may fly armed by meeting the requirements of Title 49 CFR 1544.219. Law enforcement officers should read our policies on traveling with guns.

The key regulatory requirements to transporting firearms, firearm parts or ammunition in checked baggage are:

* You must declare all firearms to the airline during the ticket counter check-in process.
* The firearm must be unloaded.
* The firearm must be in a hard-sided container.
* The container must be locked. A locked container is defined as one that completely secures the firearm from access by anyone other than you. Cases that can be pulled open with little effort do not meet this criterion. The pictures provided here illustrate the difference between a properly packaged and an improperly packaged firearm.
* We recommend that you provide the key or combination to the security officer if he or she needs to open the container. You should remain in the area designated by the aircraft operator or TSA representative to take the key back after the container is cleared for transportation. If you are not present and the security officer must open the container, we or the airline will make a reasonable attempt to contact you. If we can't contact you, the container will not be placed on the plane. Federal regulations prohibit unlocked gun cases (or cases with broken locks) on aircraft.
* You must securely pack any ammunition in fiber (such as cardboard), wood or metal boxes or other packaging that is specifically designed to carry small amounts of ammunition.
* You can't use firearm magazines/clips for packing ammunition unless they completely and securely enclose the ammunition (e.g., by securely covering the exposed portions of the magazine or by securely placing the magazine in a pouch, holder, holster or lanyard).
* You may carry the ammunition in the same hard-sided case as the firearm, as long as you pack it as described above.
* You can't bring black powder or percussion caps used with black-powder type firearms in either your carry-on or checked baggage.

We and other authorities strictly enforce these regulations. Violations can result in criminal prosecution and civil penalties of up to $10,000 per violation.

Airlines may have their own additional requirements on the carriage of firearms and the amount of ammunition that you may have in your checked baggage. Therefore, travelers should also contact the airline regarding its firearm and ammunition carriage policies.

Also, please note that many other countries have different laws that address transportation and possession of firearms. If you are traveling internationally, please check with the authorities at your destination about their requirements.

According to TSA (http://www.tsa.gov/travelers/airtravel/assistant/editorial_1666.shtm), you need to know the laws relevant to the country you are traveling to, no US prohibition is listed for traveling out of the country with ammunition. According to TSA, there is no requirement to declare the ammunition, only firearms.

Knauga
12-29-2010, 11:10 PM
Sorry man, only a dumbass doesn't research the relevant firearms laws of his destination AND doesn't package his caps properly. It doesn't take much to start a life-threatening fire inside a plane. What would have happened had he carried those on instead of checking them? What would have happened had the plane taken off and then the primers exploded?

This has nothing to do with 2A. This isn't even about 4A/TSA violations or anything. I think this man was just a fool

According to the TSA's requirements for traveling with ammunition and firearms, the man did nothing wrong in the US unless he negligently packaged the primers. Having the primers detonate is not on its face negligent as it could have been negligence on the part of the baggage handler that caused the primers to detonate.

The man MAY be a fool, those aren't facts in evidence as of yet, however, on the face of it he violated no TSA regulation.

I understand they needed to find something to charge him with

this attitude I find highly disturbing. *IF* he committed a crime, he should be charged, but the idea of finding something to charge somebody with JUST because something bad happened is a scary thought.

Munk
12-30-2010, 2:04 AM
I feel that the charge is a stretch, but the guy is an idiot for transporting them in a way that would allow them to detonate. I also think he's looking for trouble if he is trying to get them to jamaica. (With crime levels still high in some parts, I image that ammunition is at a premium, thus making reloading components profitable).


this attitude I find highly disturbing. *IF* he committed a crime, he should be charged, but the idea of finding something to charge somebody with JUST because something bad happened is a scary thought.

I don't like the idea of "charging just because", but sometimes I've seen when they hold someone with a "placeholder" charge that is dropped while they "review the evidence" (read the frigging PC) to find the proper charge for what truly happened. Is there something appropriate? Maybe negligent transportation of a hazardous material? Dunno in this case.

I believe a competent lawyer who works quickly will have the guy out in no time for the bogus charge, and the cops inability to locate the proper PC in a timely manner would make his defense that much easier.

scarville
12-30-2010, 2:28 AM
Looks like he was trying to smuggle them.

http://www.necn.com/12/29/10/Mass-man-arrested-after-bag-catches-fire/landing_newengland.html?blockID=381751&feedID=4206

Investigators say they found 700 bullet primers, the small circular part which ignites to fire a bullet, inside the lining of his checked luggage. Ammunition must be declared and carefully stored when transported in checked bags.

Investigator: "There were several hundred of them packed together, and when they are together and one ignites and you put it on the ground, and one ignites and there is going to be sympathetic ignition of them."

SKSer
12-30-2010, 5:36 AM
thats BS

Fjold
12-30-2010, 5:53 AM
The news story is BS because they keep referring to the primers as ammunition. Ammunition is allowed in checked baggage but primers alone are not. They are classed as flammable solids and are not allowed to travel by air.

B Strong
12-30-2010, 6:05 AM
http://www.foxnews.com/us/2010/12/28/police-miami-airport-explodes-bag/?intcmp=prn_baynote-js_Man_Arrested_at_Miami_Airport_After_Bullet_Part s_Found_in_Bag

Man has a few hundred live primers in his bag and is arrested for transporting ammunition. This sets a poor precedent. I understand they needed to find something to charge him with but that was a real stretch.

This fella messed up on so many levels it isn't funny.

This isn't a case of some guy with an inheirited smoothbore wheel gun that some cop decides is an SBS, or a widow with a newly found unregistered MG, this guy took it upon himself to bring what can only be termed "munitions" onto a commercial airliner without first checking to see what he should do and how he should do it.

Ignorance in this case is going to be expensive, as it often can be.

It has nothing to do with the feds or TSA overstepping, it's about a fool getting caught.

B Strong
12-30-2010, 6:08 AM
The news story is BS because they keep referring to the primers as ammunition. Ammunition is allowed in checked baggage but primers alone are not. They are classed as flammable solids and are not allowed to travel by air.

Still need to declare it and package it properly:

http://www.tsa.gov/travelers/airtravel/assistant/editorial_1666.shtm

BluNorthern
12-30-2010, 6:18 AM
Sounds squirrelly to me. Anyone with half a brain would know better than to hide primers in their luggage for a flight. Don't know what he was up to but he was up to something shady. I don't need someone like this on a plane with me and my family.
http://www.enterprisenews.com/features/x338105749/Ammunition-primer-caps-aren-t-prohibited-in-checked-luggage-on-airlines

MrNiceGuy
12-30-2010, 7:18 AM
Man....regardless of what's right and wrong and how the news is spinning the story, etc......the very bottom line is non of us would want to be on that flight if the primers ignited in the cargo hold when the plane is up in the air.....that guy should be taught a lesson.

Knauga
12-30-2010, 7:35 AM
Still need to declare it and package it properly:

http://www.tsa.gov/travelers/airtravel/assistant/editorial_1666.shtm

Package it yes, but according to the TSA website you posted (I posted it earlier, so I read it top to bottom and back again) there is no TSA requirement to declare ammunition, only firearms. TSA does not differentiate between ammunition or ammunition components with the exception of black powder components.

700 primers isn't smuggling. 700 is nothing, some places won't even sell you primers unless you buy a minimum of 1000. That would be like calling a guy with a joint in his luggage a "narcotics trafficker".

EOD Guy
12-30-2010, 8:41 AM
Everyone keeps mentioning TSA regulations. The primary violations here were of the DOT hazardous materials transportation regulations in 49 CFR.
The civil penalties for an undeclared Hazmat shipment is $15,000 per day. The criminal penalties are 5 years in Federal prison, 10 years if someone is injured because of the shipment.

I see several other violations here including improper packging, marking, labeling and lack of shipping papers.

Primers, by themselves are classed by DOT as explosive materials.

Remember that the valujet crash in Florida several years ago that killed everyone on board was cause by an undeclared and improperly packaged hazmat shipment. DOT certainly remembers.

Stonewalker
12-30-2010, 8:59 AM
According to the TSA's requirements for traveling with ammunition and firearms, the man did nothing wrong in the US unless he negligently packaged the primers. Having the primers detonate is not on its face negligent as it could have been negligence on the part of the baggage handler that caused the primers to detonate.

The man MAY be a fool, those aren't facts in evidence as of yet, however, on the face of it he violated no TSA regulation.



this attitude I find highly disturbing. *IF* he committed a crime, he should be charged, but the idea of finding something to charge somebody with JUST because something bad happened is a scary thought.

You are right I was a bit presumptive with my words. And the fact that they charged him with violation of interstate commerce seems strange. I don't really feel the baggage handlers are responsible here. I mean, I hate that they get away with all but destroying bags... but let's not kid ourselves - it's industry standard. When the airlines only pay 8-11 dollars an hour for that job they are going to get goons who don't give a ****.

LadyShooter
12-30-2010, 10:14 AM
Primers are Hazardous Materials, and as such I am not surprised by the interstate commerce charge. What a knuckle head to place himself and everyone else at risk. I love his claim to have placed the primers in his luggage to keep them from his children, right. ;)

zhyla
12-30-2010, 12:36 PM
Primers, by themselves are classed by DOT as explosive materials.

Exactly. And traveling between states/countries is clearly within DOT jurisdiction. Looks like a fair charge to me.

700 primers seems like enough to blow a hole in... a suitcase. Not sure why this was such a big fuss. Smugglers smuggle...

Wherryj
12-30-2010, 1:00 PM
Primers are subject to hazardous materials shipping regulations. This individual obviously wasn't following the rules and placed everyone in the aircraft in jeopardy. Primers are considered ammunition components, which is why he was charged as such.

You are required to declare firearms, ammunition, and other hazardous materials when flying. You can't even take filled scuba tanks, and they are only filled with compressed air, not oxygen.

There are specific packaging requirements for ammo on aircraft, and in my opinion, primers that are not packaged properly pose more of a risk than ammunition.

Since some of the primers discharged, my bet is that they weren't packaged correctly.

Plus, his final destination was another country that is not firearms friendly.

Not much of a stretch when you look at it.

I agree. There have been some companies that got into trouble for improper packaging of lithium-ion batteries when the batteries ignited during shipping.

Causing a fire on a plane, whether intentional or accidental, is usually not a good thing. There is an expectation of a certain level of handling involved in transporting potentially dangerous items.

Just as with explosives/ammo components, there are now regulations involved in transporting lithium batteries. I suspect that many people are not aware, but remember ignorance is no excuse.

stix213
12-30-2010, 1:11 PM
What gets me is if this guy was able to so easily sneak 700 primers into his luggage, why the hell do I need to let the TSA fondle my junk? It turns out the baggage handlers are better at catching this stuff than the freaking TSA.

BoxesOfLiberty
12-30-2010, 4:00 PM
"What concerns me more is why the baggage handlers are so rough with luggage as to ignite the primers inside. This needs to be looked at."

There's probably some diligent agency of the federal government looking into this as we speak!!

Actually there are several universities conducting a long-term (17-year) study into the issue of Causality of Baggage Handler Recklessness and Climate Change Trends. The study which was launched two-years ago by researchers at NAI and 14 universities on 4 continents is funded by U.S. Taxpayers via the NIS. We can expect a definitive answer sometime in 2025.

AVgunGUY
12-30-2010, 4:03 PM
Package it yes, but according to the TSA website you posted (I posted it earlier, so I read it top to bottom and back again) there is no TSA requirement to declare ammunition, only firearms. TSA does not differentiate between ammunition or ammunition components with the exception of black powder components.

I've traveled with projectiles and fully loaded ammunition - neither requiring declaration to the airline or TSA. My bags were searched (they were unlocked and I had the nice little note from TSA letting me know they rifled through my dirty closes) and nothing came of it.

Having said that, I do recall (from the airline - not TSA) that 'explosives' (or similar type stuff) were prohibited - I took that to mean the primers and/or powders. The airline had specific carry information for loaded ammunition which mirrored the TSA site. I think in both cases they have more to do with the DOT than with airline or TSA. I'm sure someone will have a relevant cite.

AVgunGUY
12-30-2010, 4:09 PM
Everyone keeps mentioning TSA regulations. The primary violations here were of the DOT hazardous materials transportation regulations in 49 CFR.
The civil penalties for an undeclared Hazmat shipment is $15,000 per day. The criminal penalties are 5 years in Federal prison, 10 years if someone is injured because of the shipment.

I see several other violations here including improper packging, marking, labeling and lack of shipping papers.

Primers, by themselves are classed by DOT as explosive materials.

Remember that the valujet crash in Florida several years ago that killed everyone on board was cause by an undeclared and improperly packaged hazmat shipment. DOT certainly remembers.

YES - when I've transported ammunition it had nothing to do with TSA - it was the airlines which referenced back to the DOT rules. As indicated above, I had my stuff searched and nobody from TSA seemed to care (no primers or powder - just projectiles and loaded ammunition in original packaging).

Knauga
12-30-2010, 7:32 PM
Exactly. And traveling between states/countries is clearly within DOT jurisdiction. Looks like a fair charge to me.

700 primers seems like enough to blow a hole in... a suitcase. Not sure why this was such a big fuss. Smugglers smuggle...

What is the difference between 700 primers in factory packaging and 700 rounds of loaded ammunition? I can lawfully pack 700 rounds of loaded ammunition in my checked baggage, why can't I pack 700 primers in my checked baggage?

dustoff31
12-30-2010, 7:38 PM
What is the difference between 700 primers in factory packaging and 700 rounds of loaded ammunition? I can lawfully pack 700 rounds of loaded ammunition in my checked baggage, why can't I pack 700 primers in my checked baggage?

The difference is that primers are considered HAZMAT and loaded ammo isn't.

Same as shipping them by surface transportation. Primers = HAZMAT. Loaded ammo = ORM-D.

Does it make any sense? No, but it wouldn't be the first time.

It does make some sense however. Primers are a mass detonation hazard. That is, one could could go off and trigger the others, especially when improperly packaged. If the primer of a loaded round detonates, only that round is likely to be effected.

EOD Guy
12-31-2010, 5:58 AM
The difference is that primers are considered HAZMAT and loaded ammo isn't.

Same as shipping them by surface transportation. Primers = HAZMAT. Loaded ammo = ORM-D.

Loaded ammunition is classed as division 1.4S explosive material when shipped by air. There is no ORM-D exception in the IATA Dangerous Goods Regulations, which govern air transport of hazardous materials. There is, however, an exception for ammunition for personal use transported in passenger baggage. The exception is limited to 3(?)Kg (6.6 Lb). I don't have my IATA book with me and I'm not sure of the exact amount, although I'm close.

Loaded ammunition is also classed as a division 1.4S explosive in surface transportaiton, but properly packaged amounts less than 30 Kg (66 Lb) can be reclassed as ORM-D. ORM-D is still hazmat and subject to the DOT regulations. ORM-D just gives you exceptions to a lot of the marking, labeling, and shipping paper requrements. That's why Hazmat charges are usually waived for ORM-D materials.

IATA = Internagtional Air Transport Association. They publish the international regulations for air shipments of dangerous goods (hazmat). All of the airlines and air cargo shippers follow these regulatrions.

dustoff31
12-31-2010, 6:12 AM
Loaded ammunition is classed as division 1.4S explosive material when shipped by air. There is no ORM-D exception in the IATA Dangerous Goods Regulations, which govern air transport of hazardous materials. There is, however, an exception for ammunition for personal use transported in passenger baggage. The exception is limited to 3(?)Kg (6.6 Lb). I don't have my IATA book with me and I'm not sure of the exact amount, although I'm close.

Loaded ammunition is also classed as a division 1.4S explosive in surface transportaiton, but properly packaged amounts less than 30 Kg (66 Lb) can be reclassed as ORM-D. ORM-D is still hazmat and subject to the DOT regulations. ORM-D just gives you exceptions to a lot of the marking, labeling, and shipping paper requrements. That's why Hazmat charges are usually waived for ORM-D materials.

IATA = Internagtional Air Transport Association. They publish the international regulations for air shipments of dangerous goods (hazmat). All of the airlines and air cargo shippers follow these regulatrions.

Thanks, that's a much clearer explaination as to classification. My main point in response to the poster was that there are valid reasons for the different treatment of primers, especially when loose, or improperly packaged vs. loaded ammo.

oddjob
12-31-2010, 8:04 AM
I have traveled by air to various USPSA matches and as long as you declare ammo and guns its never been a problem. This was pre and post 9-11.

Jamaica has IPSC shooting teams that travel to the U.S. (and other countries) to shoot. That tells me if you do things correctly your ok.

As far as primers going off.....Talk to someone who has had 50 to 100 primers go off in a primer tube. It will send the plastic primer rod (like a Dillon) through sheet rock, ears ringing for a long time and you will change your shorts out!